Transplantation of Nonvascularized Kidney Tissue Fragments Into the Rat Liver With the Aim of Preserving Renal Function

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For research in regenerative medicine, not only the study of cellular pluripotency but also knowledge of the reorganization of tissue structure is crucial. However, the latter will probably be more difficult to acquire. When small fragments of kidney (approx. 1 × 1 mm) were implanted in the liver of syngeneic LEW rats, the tissue survived at least 2 weeks with retention of normal structure including glomeruli and tubules. In contrast, no kidney structure survived when transplanted to subcutaneous sites, omentum, or spleen. Molecules involved in renal tubular function, such as megalin and glut2 transporter protein, were detectable in the implanted tissue by immunohistochemistry, suggesting that the cells were biologically active. Survival of cortex, medulla, and calyx tissues was then compared. All three components were still detectable 8 weeks after transplantation but cortex and medulla were replaced by granuloma at 6 months. Only calyx tissue survived for up to 12 months after transplantation. There was no marked difference in tissue survival, either when the recipient liver was partially resected or when infantile donor kidney was implanted instead of adult kidney. The present method opens new avenues in the development of regenerative medicine (i.e., tissue transplantation) as an intermediate modus between organ transplantation and cell transplantation.

Keywords: Kidney; Megalin; Rat; Tissue transplantation

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: 1: *Department of Innovative Surgery, National Research Institute for Child Health and Development, Tokyo, Japan 2: †Suiyukai Clinic, Nara, Japan

Publication date: January 1, 2004

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  • Cell Transplantation publishes original, peer-reviewed research and review articles on the subject of cell transplantation and its application to human diseases. To ensure high-quality contributions from all areas of transplantation, separate section editors and editorial boards have been established. Articles deal with a wide range of topics including physiological, medical, preclinical, tissue engineering, and device-oriented aspects of transplantation of nervous system, endocrine, growth factor-secreting, bone marrow, epithelial, endothelial, and genetically engineered cells, among others. Basic clinical studies and immunological research papers are also featured. To provide complete coverage of this revolutionary field, Cell Transplantation will report on relevant technological advances, and ethical and regulatory considerations of cell transplants. Cell Transplantation is now an Open Access journal starting with volume 18 in 2009, and therefore there will be an inexpensive publication charge, which is dependent on the number of pages, in addition to the charge for color figures. This will allow work to be disseminated to a wider audience and also entitle the corresponding author to a free PDF, as well as prepublication of an unedited version of the manuscript.
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