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Serum Neutrophil Gelatinase-Associated Lipocalin as a Predictor of Organ Recovery From Delayed Graft Function After Kidney Transplantation From Donors After Cardiac Death

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Because of a worldwide shortage of renal grafts, kidneys procured from donors after cardiac death (DCD) have recently become an important source of renal transplants. However, DCD kidneys often have complications with delayed graft function (DGF) and recipients require hemodialysis (HD) in the early period after kidney transplantation (KTx). This study evaluated serum NGAL as a potential specific parameter to predict early functional recovery of transplanted DCD kidneys. The average serum neutrophil gelatinase-associated lipocalin (NGAL) level in normal samples was 53 ± 30 ng/ml, while that in patients with chronic renal failure requiring HD was markedly raised at 963 ± 33 ng/ml. In patients undergoing a living-related KTx from a living donor (n = 11), serum NGAL level decreased rapidly after KTx, and only in two cases, with serum NGAL levels over 400 ng/ml on postoperative day 1 (POD1), was HD required due to DGF. In contrast, all patients undergoing a KTx from a DCD (n = 5) required HD due to DGF. Even in these cases, serum NGAL levels decreased rapidly several days after a KTx prior to the recovery of urine output and preceding the decrease in serum creatinine level. The pattern of decline in serum NGAL was biphasic, the decrease after the second peak indicating a functional recovery within the next several days. These data suggest that monitoring of serum NGAL levels may allow us to predict graft recovery and the need for HD after a KTx from a DCD.

Keywords: Delayed graft function; Donation after cardiac death; Kidney transplantation; Neutrophil gelatinase-associated lipocalin (NGAL)

Document Type: Research Article


Publication date: January 1, 2008

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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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