Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

New treatment strategies for chronic kidney disease from the animal kingdom

16.02.2018

The field of biomimetics offers an innovative approach to solving human problems by imitating strategies found in nature. Medical research could also benefit from biomimetics, as a group of international experts from various fields, including a wildlife veterinarian and wildlife ecologists from Vetmeduni Vienna, point out using the example of chronic kidney disease. In future research, they intend to study the mechanisms that protect the muscles, organs and bones of certain animals during extreme conditions such as hibernation. The possibilities were published in Nature Reviews.

Through certain genetic modifications, the process of evolution has resulted in a great variety of adaptations to different environments in the animal kingdom. Many species have developed fascinating mechanisms that provide resistance to disease or help protect their cells against ageing and oxidative stress in extreme conditions. It would therefore make sense to investigate these mechanisms in other species and adapt the insights gained to develop new strategies in the field of human medicine.


Biomimetics offers an innovative approach to solving human problems by imitating strategies of for example hibernators like bears found in nature.

Georg Rauer

An increased focus on biomimetics, the field of research that studies this approach, could lead to a medical breakthrough in the treatment of chronic kidney disease. An international, interdisciplinary research collaboration, including scientists from the Research Institute of Wildlife Ecology, has now provided an initial overview of which animal mechanisms could be useful for the development of new therapeutic approaches to this globally spreading disease.

Solutions sought for chronic kidney disease

Physical adaptations that are of interest to biomimetics include the outstanding longevity of naked mole rats, for example, or the ability to survive extreme conditions like hibernation. “Biomimetics attempts to copy strategies that have already been tried and perfected by nature over thousands of years,” explains Johanna Painer from the Department of Integrative Biology and Evolution.

Painer, in an international collaboration with experts from various different fields, researches which of these elements from the animal kingdom could be applied to human health. “We are comparing examples from human and veterinary medicine as well as from the field of biology to more quickly learn about the development of certain problems and then minimise them in the future,” the researcher says.

One of these problems for which solutions may be found in the animal kingdom is chronic kidney disease. This disease, which is becoming increasingly prevalent worldwide, is associated with many complications, such as cardiovascular disease, osteoporosis, muscle wasting and premature ageing. But kidney disease is also a problem in the animal kingdom. Domestic felines and wild cats are quite frequently affected by chronic kidney disease. “A possible cause is the high meat consumption and the resulting changes of the bacteria in the intestine,” says Painer. Other animals, like the common vampire bat or hibernators like the bear, have developed mechanisms that project them against the disease.

Future studies should investigate the mechanisms which, on the one hand, cause the disease in animals and, on the other hand, are responsible for certain protective effects. “Studies of felids may provide information on links between red meat consumption, gut microbiota and kidney disease. Studies of hibernating bears could help identify new strategies to treat and prevent complications such as muscle wasting, pressure ulcers, thrombosis and osteoporosis during longer periods of bedriddenness,” concludes Painer. New possibilities of organ preservation may also be found.

The advantage offered by biomimetics lies in its interdisciplinary nature. The collaboration between nephrologists – these are specialists in kidney disease and high blood pressure – and experts from other fields, such as veterinary medicine, zoology, molecular biology, anthropology and ecology, could introduce a novel approach for improving human health and help to find new treatment strategies for chronic kidney disease. “Collaboration between various disciplines creates a synergetic effect that may result in the discovery of many novel therapeutic approaches. We should make increased use of such collaboration in the future,” says Painer.

Service:
The article “Novel treatment strategies for chronic kidney disease: insights from the animal kingdom” by Peter Stenvinkel, Johanna Painer, Makoto Kuro-o, Miguel Lanaspa, Walter Arnold, Thomas Ruf, Paul G. Shiels and Richard J. Johnson was published in Nature Reviews.
https://www.nature.com/articles/nrneph.2017.169

About the University of Veterinary Medicine, Vienna
The University of Veterinary Medicine, Vienna in Austria is one of the leading academic and research institutions in the field of Veterinary Sciences in Europe. About 1,300 employees and 2,300 students work on the campus in the north of Vienna which also houses five university clinics and various research sites. Outside of Vienna the university operates Teaching and Research Farms. The Vetmeduni Vienna plays in the global top league: in 2017, it occupies the excellent place 8 in the world-wide Shanghai University veterinary in the subject "Veterinary Science". http://www.vetmeduni.ac.at

Scientific Contact:
Johanna Painer
Unit of Conservation Medicine
Research Institute of Wildlife Ecology
University of Veterinary Medicine Vienna (Vetmeduni Vienna)
T +43 1 25077-7251
johanna.painer@vetmeduni.ac.at

Released by:
Georg Mair
Science Communication / Corporate Communications
University of Veterinary Medicine Vienna (Vetmeduni Vienna)
T +43 1 25077-1165
georg.mair@vetmeduni.ac.at

Weitere Informationen:

https://www.vetmeduni.ac.at/en/infoservice/presseinformation/presse-releases-201...

Mag.rer.nat. Georg Mair | idw - Informationsdienst Wissenschaft

More articles from Life Sciences:

nachricht Scientists uncover the role of a protein in production & survival of myelin-forming cells
19.07.2018 | Advanced Science Research Center, GC/CUNY

nachricht NYSCF researchers develop novel bioengineering technique for personalized bone grafts
18.07.2018 | New York Stem Cell Foundation

All articles from Life Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

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

Im Focus: Future electronic components to be printed like newspapers

A new manufacturing technique uses a process similar to newspaper printing to form smoother and more flexible metals for making ultrafast electronic devices.

The low-cost process, developed by Purdue University researchers, combines tools already used in industry for manufacturing metals on a large scale, but uses...

Im Focus: First evidence on the source of extragalactic particles

For the first time ever, scientists have determined the cosmic origin of highest-energy neutrinos. A research group led by IceCube scientist Elisa Resconi, spokesperson of the Collaborative Research Center SFB1258 at the Technical University of Munich (TUM), provides an important piece of evidence that the particles detected by the IceCube neutrino telescope at the South Pole originate from a galaxy four billion light-years away from Earth.

To rule out other origins with certainty, the team led by neutrino physicist Elisa Resconi from the Technical University of Munich and multi-wavelength...

Im Focus: Magnetic vortices: Two independent magnetic skyrmion phases discovered in a single material

For the first time a team of researchers have discovered two different phases of magnetic skyrmions in a single material. Physicists of the Technical Universities of Munich and Dresden and the University of Cologne can now better study and understand the properties of these magnetic structures, which are important for both basic research and applications.

Whirlpools are an everyday experience in a bath tub: When the water is drained a circular vortex is formed. Typically, such whirls are rather stable. Similar...

Im Focus: Breaking the bond: To take part or not?

Physicists working with Roland Wester at the University of Innsbruck have investigated if and how chemical reactions can be influenced by targeted vibrational excitation of the reactants. They were able to demonstrate that excitation with a laser beam does not affect the efficiency of a chemical exchange reaction and that the excited molecular group acts only as a spectator in the reaction.

A frequently used reaction in organic chemistry is nucleophilic substitution. It plays, for example, an important role in in the synthesis of new chemical...

Im Focus: New 2D Spectroscopy Methods

Optical spectroscopy allows investigating the energy structure and dynamic properties of complex quantum systems. Researchers from the University of Würzburg present two new approaches of coherent two-dimensional spectroscopy.

"Put an excitation into the system and observe how it evolves." According to physicist Professor Tobias Brixner, this is the credo of optical spectroscopy....

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

Leading experts in Diabetes, Metabolism and Biomedical Engineering discuss Precision Medicine

13.07.2018 | Event News

Conference on Laser Polishing – LaP: Fine Tuning for Surfaces

12.07.2018 | Event News

11th European Wood-based Panel Symposium 2018: Meeting point for the wood-based materials industry

03.07.2018 | Event News

 
Latest News

A smart safe rechargeable zinc ion battery based on sol-gel transition electrolytes

20.07.2018 | Power and Electrical Engineering

Reversing cause and effect is no trouble for quantum computers

20.07.2018 | Information Technology

Princeton-UPenn research team finds physics treasure hidden in a wallpaper pattern

20.07.2018 | Materials Sciences

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>