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      Clinical Trial Endpoints in Acute Kidney Injury

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          The development and use of consensus criteria for acute kidney injury (AKI) diagnosis and the inclusion of recently identified markers of renal parenchymal damage as endpoints in clinical trials have improved the ability of physicians to compare the incidence and severity of AKI across patient populations, provided targets for testing new treatments, and may increase insight into the mechanisms of AKI. To date, these markers have not consistently translated into important clinical outcomes. Is that because these markers of renal injury/dysfunction are measurements of process of care (and not indicative of persistently impaired renal function), or is it because patients do actually recover from AKI? Physicians currently have limited ability to measure renal function reserve, and the ultimate consequence of a case of AKI on long-term morbidity remains unclear. There is little doubt that groups of patients who develop AKI have worse outcomes than groups of patients who do not, but investigators are now realizing the value of measuring clinically meaningful renal endpoints in all subjects enrolled in AKI clinical trials. Important examples of these outcomes include persistently impaired renal function, new hemodialysis, and death. We propose that these major adverse kidney events (MAKE) be included in all effectiveness clinical trials. Adaptation of the MAKE composite assessed 30, 60, or 90 days following AKI (i.e., MAKE30 or MAKE90) will improve our capacity to understand and treat AKI and may also provide a consensus composite to allow comparison of different interventions. Primary endpoints for phase I and II clinical trials, on the other hand, should continue to use continuous markers of renal injury/dysfunction as well as ‘hard' clinical outcomes in order to generate meaningful data with limited subject exposure to untested treatments. By doing so, investigators may assess safety without requiring large sample sizes, demonstrate treatment effect of an unknown therapeutic, and power subsequent studies. In contrast, phase III trials should include consensus AKI criteria and more important subsequent clinical outcomes, such as MAKE90, as primary endpoints.

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          Most cited references 10

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          Acute kidney injury, mortality, length of stay, and costs in hospitalized patients.

          The marginal effects of acute kidney injury on in-hospital mortality, length of stay (LOS), and costs have not been well described. A consecutive sample of 19,982 adults who were admitted to an urban academic medical center, including 9210 who had two or more serum creatinine (SCr) determinations, was evaluated. The presence and degree of acute kidney injury were assessed using absolute and relative increases from baseline to peak SCr concentration during hospitalization. Large increases in SCr concentration were relatively rare (e.g., >or=2.0 mg/dl in 105 [1%] patients), whereas more modest increases in SCr were common (e.g., >or=0.5 mg/dl in 1237 [13%] patients). Modest changes in SCr were significantly associated with mortality, LOS, and costs, even after adjustment for age, gender, admission International Classification of Diseases, Ninth Revision, Clinical Modification diagnosis, severity of illness (diagnosis-related group weight), and chronic kidney disease. For example, an increase in SCr >or=0.5 mg/dl was associated with a 6.5-fold (95% confidence interval 5.0 to 8.5) increase in the odds of death, a 3.5-d increase in LOS, and nearly 7500 dollars in excess hospital costs. Acute kidney injury is associated with significantly increased mortality, LOS, and costs across a broad spectrum of conditions. Moreover, outcomes are related directly to the severity of acute kidney injury, whether characterized by nominal or percentage changes in serum creatinine.
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            Minimal changes of serum creatinine predict prognosis in patients after cardiothoracic surgery: a prospective cohort study.

            Acute renal failure increases risk of death after cardiac surgery. However, it is not known whether more subtle changes in renal function might have an impact on outcome. Thus, the association between small serum creatinine changes after surgery and mortality, independent of other established perioperative risk indicators, was analyzed. In a prospective cohort study in 4118 patients who underwent cardiac and thoracic aortic surgery, the effect of changes in serum creatinine within 48 h postoperatively on 30-d mortality was analyzed. Cox regression was used to correct for various established demographic preoperative risk indicators, intraoperative parameters, and postoperative complications. In the 2441 patients in whom serum creatinine decreased, early mortality was 2.6% in contrast to 8.9% in patients with increased postoperative serum creatinine values. Patients with large decreases (DeltaCrea or =0.5 mg/dl. For all groups, increases in mortality remained significant in multivariate analyses, including postoperative renal replacement therapy. After cardiac and thoracic aortic surgery, 30-d mortality was lowest in patients with a slight postoperative decrease in serum creatinine. Any even minimal increase or profound decrease of serum creatinine was associated with a substantial decrease in survival.
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              Is Open Access

              Discovery and validation of cell cycle arrest biomarkers in human acute kidney injury

              Introduction Acute kidney injury (AKI) can evolve quickly and clinical measures of function often fail to detect AKI at a time when interventions are likely to provide benefit. Identifying early markers of kidney damage has been difficult due to the complex nature of human AKI, in which multiple etiologies exist. The objective of this study was to identify and validate novel biomarkers of AKI. Methods We performed two multicenter observational studies in critically ill patients at risk for AKI - discovery and validation. The top two markers from discovery were validated in a second study (Sapphire) and compared to a number of previously described biomarkers. In the discovery phase, we enrolled 522 adults in three distinct cohorts including patients with sepsis, shock, major surgery, and trauma and examined over 300 markers. In the Sapphire validation study, we enrolled 744 adult subjects with critical illness and without evidence of AKI at enrollment; the final analysis cohort was a heterogeneous sample of 728 critically ill patients. The primary endpoint was moderate to severe AKI (KDIGO stage 2 to 3) within 12 hours of sample collection. Results Moderate to severe AKI occurred in 14% of Sapphire subjects. The two top biomarkers from discovery were validated. Urine insulin-like growth factor-binding protein 7 (IGFBP7) and tissue inhibitor of metalloproteinases-2 (TIMP-2), both inducers of G1 cell cycle arrest, a key mechanism implicated in AKI, together demonstrated an AUC of 0.80 (0.76 and 0.79 alone). Urine [TIMP-2]·[IGFBP7] was significantly superior to all previously described markers of AKI (P 0.72. Furthermore, [TIMP-2]·[IGFBP7] significantly improved risk stratification when added to a nine-variable clinical model when analyzed using Cox proportional hazards model, generalized estimating equation, integrated discrimination improvement or net reclassification improvement. Finally, in sensitivity analyses [TIMP-2]·[IGFBP7] remained significant and superior to all other markers regardless of changes in reference creatinine method. Conclusions Two novel markers for AKI have been identified and validated in independent multicenter cohorts. Both markers are superior to existing markers, provide additional information over clinical variables and add mechanistic insight into AKI. Trial registration number NCT01209169.

                Author and article information

                Nephron Clin Pract
                Nephron Clinical Practice
                S. Karger AG
                September 2014
                24 September 2014
                : 127
                : 1-4
                : 89-93
                Department of Anesthesiology, Vanderbilt University School of Medicine, Nashville, Tenn., USA
                Author notes
                *Frederic T. Billings IV, MD, MSc, 1211 21st Avenue South, Suite 526, Nashville, TN 37212 (USA)
                363725 PMC4480222 Nephron Clin Pract 2014;127:89-93
                © 2014 S. Karger AG, Basel

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