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      Functional Intravital Imaging of Leukocytes in Animal Models of Renal Injury

      Nephron Physiology

      S. Karger AG

      Neutrophil, Inflammation, Fluorescence, Multi-photon, Macrophage

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          An important emerging paradigm in the understanding of renal disease is the recognition of the central role of inflammation in the initiation and progression of acute and chronic kidney injury. These advances have led to an increasing awareness of the importance of leukocytes (white blood cells (WBC)) in the pathogenesis of renal disease, and the necessity for a greater understanding of the specific roles of different WBC lineages. All aspects of WBC function have been implicated in aspects of renal disease. In many cases soluble factors derived from these cells (cytokines, complement, immunoglobulins, etc.) having effects remote from the secreting cells are involved, while in other cases there is apparently more direct involvement of infiltrating cells themselves acting on their immediate surroundings. This highlights the importance of understanding the dynamic behavior of specific WBC cell types and their interactions with the intrinsic cells of the kidney during injury. New insight into this question is promised by recent developments in imaging technology that allow WBC movement and interactions with endothelial or epithelial cells or with the extracellular matrix to be visualized within tissues, even in the relatively unperturbed setting of intact organs in the live animal.

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          Most cited references 9

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          Efficient magnetic cell labeling with protamine sulfate complexed to ferumoxides for cellular MRI.

          Recently, there have been several reports using various superparamagnetic iron oxide (SPIO) nanoparticles to label mammalian cells for monitoring their temporal and spatial migration in vivo by magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). The purpose of this study was to evaluate the efficiency and toxicity of labeling cells using 2 commercially available Food and Drug Administration (FDA)-approved agents, ferumoxides, a suspension of dextran-coated SPIO used as an MRI contrast agent, and protamine sulfate, conventionally used to reverse heparin anticoagulation but also used ex vivo as a cationic transfection agent. After labeling of human mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) and hematopoietic (CD34+) stem cells and other mammalian cells with ferumoxides-protamine sulfate complexes (FE-Pro), cellular toxicity, functional capacity, and quantitative cellular iron incorporation were determined. FE-Pro-labeled cells demonstrated no short- or long-term toxicity, changes in differentiation capacity of the stem cells, or changes in phenotype when compared with unlabeled cells. Efficient labeling with FE-Pro was observed with iron content per cell varying between 2.01 +/- 0.1 pg for CD34+ cells and 10.94 +/- 1.86 pg for MSCs with 100% of cells labeled. Cell labeling using these agents should facilitate the translation of this method to clinical trials for evaluation of trafficking of infused or transplanted cells by MRI.
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            Chemokines and chemokine receptors are involved in the resolution or progression of renal disease.

            Locally secreted chemokines mediate leukocyte recruitment during the initiation and amplification phase of renal inflammation. In turn, the infiltrating leukocytes contribute to renal damage by releasing inflammatory and profibrotic factors. Rapid down modulation of the chemokine signal will support resolution of acute inflammation, whereas progression occurs if ongoing or repeated renal injury maintains continuous local chemokine secretion and leukocyte influx into the glomerulus or the interstitial space. In glomerular injury proteinuria itself as well as glomerular secreted cytokines stimulate downstream tubular epithelial cells to also secrete chemokines. During primary tubular injury, tubular epithelial cells directly become a major site of chemokine production. This in turn supports leukocyte infiltration and activation. Infiltrating leukocytes stimulate fibroblast proliferation and matrix synthesis, leading to widening of the interstitial space. The specific and intricate renal vascular architecture renders the organ susceptible to ischemic damage as interstitial volume increases. Ischemia in turn serves as a stimulus for chemokine and cytokine production and matrix synthesis. The mutual stimulation between fibroblasts and infiltrating leukocytes supports progressive tubular damage, renal fibrosis, and glomerulosclerosis. Potentially this vicious circle leading to progression of chronic nephropathies offers the opportunity for therapeutic intervention. Interfering with the chemokine network that mediates leukocyte recruitment may represent a promising therapeutic option for progressive renal disorders and renal fibrosis. This article summarizes the present data on the role of chemokines in acute and chronic renal disease with special emphasis on their potential role in mediating resolution or progression of renal disease as well as on therapeutic options.
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              In vivo imaging of leukocyte trafficking in blood vessels and tissues.

              Selective recruitment of blood-borne leukocytes to tissues and their proper positioning within them is crucial for the many integrated functions of the immune system. Intravital microscopy (IVM) techniques have been employed for more than a century to study these events at the single-cell level in living animals. Conventional video-based IVM allows the visualization of extremely rapid adhesion events at the interface between blood and tissue. Multiphoton IVM is a relatively new tool for imaging the slower dynamics of cell migration and cell-cell interactions in the extravascular space in three dimensions. Fueled by the burgeoning development of sophisticated fluorescent markers and increasingly powerful imaging tools, we are currently witnessing the emergence of a new field in immuno-imaging, in which leukocyte function and cell-cell communication is explored in a truly physiological context.

                Author and article information

                Nephron Physiol
                Nephron Physiology
                S. Karger AG
                March 2006
                11 April 2006
                : 103
                : 2
                : p86-p90
                Division of Nephrology, Indiana University School of Medicine, Indianapolis, Ind., USA
                92009 Nephron Physiol 2006;103:p86–p90
                © 2006 S. Karger AG, Basel

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                Page count
                Figures: 2, References: 23, Pages: 1
                Self URI (application/pdf):
                Microscopic Imaging

                Cardiovascular Medicine, Nephrology

                Neutrophil, Inflammation, Multi-photon, Macrophage, Fluorescence


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