A translational study of Galectin-3 as an early biomarker and potential therapeutic target for ischemic-reperfusion induced acute kidney injury
Purpose: We evaluated Galectin-3 (Gal-3) as a potential early biomarker of acute kidney disease (AKI), and the effect of Gal-3 inhibition by modified citrus pectin (P-MCP) on renal ischemia/reperfusion (I/R) induced AKI.
Methods: Among fifty-two post-cardiac surgery patients, serum and urine Gal-3 levels were examined on intensive care unit (ICU) admission. In a rat renal I/R injury model, Gal-3 levels, renal function, and histopathology were evaluated in rats pretreated with P-MCP for one week (n = 16) compared to controls (n = 16).
Results: Among post-cardiac surgery patients, median serum and urine Gal-3 levels on ICU admission were higher in patients who developed AKI than those who did not (AKI vs non-AKI serum: 18.37 vs. 8.08 ng/ml, p < 0.001; AKI vs non-AKI urine:13.27 vs. 6.27 ng/ml, p < 0.001). Serum and urine Gal-3 levels were reliable biomarkers for detecting AKI (AUC: 0.88 and 0.87). In the rat renal I/R injury model, I/R caused an increase of Gal-3 at 0.5 h after reperfusion (p < 0.05). Gal-3 inhibition by P-MCP significantly decreased Gal-3 release and expression (p < 0.05), reduced interleukin (IL-6) release (p < 0.05), decreased renal dysfunction, and reduced renal tubular injury.
Conclusions: Gal-3 is a potential early biomarker in the diagnosis of AKI. Inhibition of Gal-3 may provide therapeutic utility in the treatment of I/R-induced AKI.
Keywords: Acute kidney injury; Biomarker; Galectin-3; Ischemia-reperfusion injury; Modified citrus pectin.
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