Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Stopping gout in its tracks

26.03.2012
Detecting imminent attacks of gout is now possible using a new modification to an established medical imaging technique

Agonizing and debilitating attacks of gout, an inflammatory disease affecting the joints, could soon be consigned to history, thanks to a non-invasive test that can detect the disease before the first painful symptoms strike.


PET imaging reveals that compared to a healthy rat (left), a rat model with gout (right) accumulates much higher levels of radiolabeled uric acid in it limbs. Copyright : 2012 Elsevier Inc.

Keiji Yashio and Yasuyoshi Watanabe at the RIKEN Center for Molecular Imaging Science at Kobe and their colleagues developed the test that, as well as being useful for diagnosis, could finally reveal exactly what triggers bouts of the disease.

Gout attacks can occur when uric acid levels rise to abnormally high levels in the blood, and then begin to accumulate and crystallize in the lubricating, or synovial, fluid within joints. Patients tend to experience the disease as a series of attacks, and currently there is no way to detect when an attack is about to begin.

To provide a test for the disease, Yashio and Watanabe developed a way to synthesize uric acid labeled with carbon-11, a positron-emitting form of carbon that can be detected by the medical imaging technique called positron emission tomography (PET). Using this tool, medical investigators could scan the body and follow the flows of uric acid around it. If uric acid is beginning to accumulate in the joints, an attack of gout could be imminent, and so preventive medicine can be given.

Yashio and Watanabe successfully tested this idea in rats, showing that the uric acid probe accumulates in the limbs of diseased rats at levels 2.6-fold higher than healthy specimens. The next step is to test it in people. “Of course, we will test it in gout patients, in remission and in attack,” says Watanabe. The team hopes that their whole-body approach will also allow other uric acid related diseases to be detected in this way. “The PET study could reveal the accumulation of uric acid in the other tissues, such as the kidneys,” he adds. Uric acid build up in the kidney can lead to conditions as serious as renal failure.
Despite decades of study, the relationship between uric acid levels in the blood and the onset of disease symptoms remains unclear. The team’s whole-body snapshots of uric acid distribution may provide the answer. “The PET analysis could clarify whether clearance of uric acid from the kidney in patients is the problem, or whether the problem might be in the circulation of synovial fluid in the cavity of the affected joint,” explains Watanabe.

The corresponding author for this highlight is based at the Molecular Probe Dynamics Laboratory, RIKEN Center for Molecular Imaging Science

gro-pr | Research asia research news
Further information:
http://www.riken.jp
http://www.researchsea.com

More articles from Health and Medicine:

nachricht 3D images of cancer cells in the body: Medical physicists from Halle present new method
16.05.2018 | Martin-Luther-Universität Halle-Wittenberg

nachricht Better equipped in the fight against lung cancer
16.05.2018 | Friedrich-Alexander-Universität Erlangen-Nürnberg

All articles from Health and Medicine >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Explanation for puzzling quantum oscillations has been found

So-called quantum many-body scars allow quantum systems to stay out of equilibrium much longer, explaining experiment | Study published in Nature Physics

Recently, researchers from Harvard and MIT succeeded in trapping a record 53 atoms and individually controlling their quantum state, realizing what is called a...

Im Focus: Dozens of binaries from Milky Way's globular clusters could be detectable by LISA

Next-generation gravitational wave detector in space will complement LIGO on Earth

The historic first detection of gravitational waves from colliding black holes far outside our galaxy opened a new window to understanding the universe. A...

Im Focus: Entangled atoms shine in unison

A team led by Austrian experimental physicist Rainer Blatt has succeeded in characterizing the quantum entanglement of two spatially separated atoms by observing their light emission. This fundamental demonstration could lead to the development of highly sensitive optical gradiometers for the precise measurement of the gravitational field or the earth's magnetic field.

The age of quantum technology has long been heralded. Decades of research into the quantum world have led to the development of methods that make it possible...

Im Focus: Computer-Designed Customized Regenerative Heart Valves

Cardiovascular tissue engineering aims to treat heart disease with prostheses that grow and regenerate. Now, researchers from the University of Zurich, the Technical University Eindhoven and the Charité Berlin have successfully implanted regenerative heart valves, designed with the aid of computer simulations, into sheep for the first time.

Producing living tissue or organs based on human cells is one of the main research fields in regenerative medicine. Tissue engineering, which involves growing...

Im Focus: Light-induced superconductivity under high pressure

A team of scientists of the Max Planck Institute for the Structure and Dynamics of Matter (MPSD) at the Center for Free-Electron Laser Science in Hamburg investigated optically-induced superconductivity in the alkali-doped fulleride K3C60under high external pressures. This study allowed, on one hand, to uniquely assess the nature of the transient state as a superconducting phase. In addition, it unveiled the possibility to induce superconductivity in K3C60 at temperatures far above the -170 degrees Celsius hypothesized previously, and rather all the way to room temperature. The paper by Cantaluppi et al has been published in Nature Physics.

Unlike ordinary metals, superconductors have the unique capability of transporting electrical currents without any loss. Nowadays, their technological...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

Save the date: Forum European Neuroscience – 07-11 July 2018 in Berlin, Germany

02.05.2018 | Event News

Invitation to the upcoming "Current Topics in Bioinformatics: Big Data in Genomics and Medicine"

13.04.2018 | Event News

Unique scope of UV LED technologies and applications presented in Berlin: ICULTA-2018

12.04.2018 | Event News

 
Latest News

Supersonic waves may help electronics beat the heat

18.05.2018 | Power and Electrical Engineering

Keeping a Close Eye on Ice Loss

18.05.2018 | Information Technology

CrowdWater: An App for Flood Research

18.05.2018 | Information Technology

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>