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 Electrical 'switch' in brain's capillary network monitors activity and controls blood flow
27.03.2017 | Larner College of Medicine at the University of Vermont

nachricht Laser activated gold pyramids could deliver drugs, DNA into cells without harm
24.03.2017 | Harvard John A. Paulson School of Engineering and Applied Sciences

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: Giant Magnetic Fields in the Universe

Astronomers from Bonn and Tautenburg in Thuringia (Germany) used the 100-m radio telescope at Effelsberg to observe several galaxy clusters. At the edges of these large accumulations of dark matter, stellar systems (galaxies), hot gas, and charged particles, they found magnetic fields that are exceptionally ordered over distances of many million light years. This makes them the most extended magnetic fields in the universe known so far.

The results will be published on March 22 in the journal „Astronomy & Astrophysics“.

Galaxy clusters are the largest gravitationally bound structures in the universe. With a typical extent of about 10 million light years, i.e. 100 times the...

Im Focus: Tracing down linear ubiquitination

Researchers at the Goethe University Frankfurt, together with partners from the University of Tübingen in Germany and Queen Mary University as well as Francis Crick Institute from London (UK) have developed a novel technology to decipher the secret ubiquitin code.

Ubiquitin is a small protein that can be linked to other cellular proteins, thereby controlling and modulating their functions. The attachment occurs in many...

Im Focus: Perovskite edges can be tuned for optoelectronic performance

Layered 2D material improves efficiency for solar cells and LEDs

In the eternal search for next generation high-efficiency solar cells and LEDs, scientists at Los Alamos National Laboratory and their partners are creating...

Im Focus: Polymer-coated silicon nanosheets as alternative to graphene: A perfect team for nanoelectronics

Silicon nanosheets are thin, two-dimensional layers with exceptional optoelectronic properties very similar to those of graphene. Albeit, the nanosheets are less stable. Now researchers at the Technical University of Munich (TUM) have, for the first time ever, produced a composite material combining silicon nanosheets and a polymer that is both UV-resistant and easy to process. This brings the scientists a significant step closer to industrial applications like flexible displays and photosensors.

Silicon nanosheets are thin, two-dimensional layers with exceptional optoelectronic properties very similar to those of graphene. Albeit, the nanosheets are...

Im Focus: Researchers Imitate Molecular Crowding in Cells

Enzymes behave differently in a test tube compared with the molecular scrum of a living cell. Chemists from the University of Basel have now been able to simulate these confined natural conditions in artificial vesicles for the first time. As reported in the academic journal Small, the results are offering better insight into the development of nanoreactors and artificial organelles.

Enzymes behave differently in a test tube compared with the molecular scrum of a living cell. Chemists from the University of Basel have now been able to...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

International Land Use Symposium ILUS 2017: Call for Abstracts and Registration open

20.03.2017 | Event News

CONNECT 2017: International congress on connective tissue

14.03.2017 | Event News

ICTM Conference: Turbine Construction between Big Data and Additive Manufacturing

07.03.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Northern oceans pumped CO2 into the atmosphere

27.03.2017 | Earth Sciences

Fingerprint' technique spots frog populations at risk from pollution

27.03.2017 | Life Sciences

Big data approach to predict protein structure

27.03.2017 | Life Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>