Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Mayo Clinic researchers discover that donor kidney protects itself in new body

26.08.2003


A long-standing medical discussion about how transplanted organs survive in a new body has received provocative new evidence from Mayo Clinic research. It shows a donated kidney survives in a new body by turning on a protective mechanism to shield it from the hostile environment of the patient’s immune system. The results are published in this month’s American Journal of Transplantation.



Says Mark Stegall, M.D., head of the transplant team that studied kidney genes’ response to transplantation, "The big question has always been: Why don’t the antibodies injure the kidney? Our study begins to show one possible reason for that -- there’s a protective mechanism at work."

In the study, the Mayo Clinic team analyzed which genes are turned on during the biological phenomenon known as "accommodation" -- the process by which a transplanted organ adapts to the new environment of the donor’s body. Accommodation was first described 20 years ago by Jeffrey Platt, M.D., a Mayo Clinic transplant biologist and co-author of this current Mayo Clinic study.


James Gloor, M.D., a Mayo Clinic nephrologist and research team member, describes the significance of the work this way: "It’s not that the recipient’s immune system fails to see the organ; it’s more that the organ, in some way, can turn on this protection that allows it to inhabit this otherwise hostile environment of a new body."

An Accommodation Analogy: Calluses and Blisters

Transplant surgeons want to get to the heart of the accommodation mechanism so they can manipulate it most effectively and gently. Their goal is to provide the patient maximum benefit in a transplant with the least side effects.

Says Dr. Gloor, "In biology, most of the time the body can protect itself from a variety of things." He offers the example of how feet protect themselves from the friction of new shoes that cause blisters by producing protective skin thickenings: calluses. "Once your feet have calluses, you can walk around with your shoes and you don’t develop blisters anymore. The reason you can is that your foot has accommodated to that hostile environment," he says.

Drs. Stegall and Gloor say a similar protective response appears to occur during kidney transplantation. For example, when one kidney is removed from the donor, that leaves the donor with a single functioning kidney which senses that it needs to do more work. "We can see it will get bigger so it can do more work. It’s compensating for the fact that it’s the only one there,’’ Dr. Gloor explains.

The Experiment

To try to observe the mechanisms at work in accommodation, the Mayo Clinic team used a molecular biological technique that allowed them to look at which genes were expressed in kidney transplants in which the donor’s and patient’s immune systems were compatible. They then contrasted the compatible-transplant gene expression patterns with genes expressed in kidney transplants that were immunologically incompatible.

The Results

Different gene-expression patterns occurred in different situations. Says Dr. Stegall, "We found that there was a wide array of entirely different genes turned on -- or turned off -- in the incompatible transplants that were not changed in regular kidney transplants. It implies that something is happening in the incompatible kidney. From the results, it seems likely that the kidney is ’accommodating’ to the otherwise destructive antibodies by developing processes that actually protect it." Accommodation, he adds, may actually be a fairly general phenomenon present in a variety of human diseases.



Contact:
Sara Lee
507-284-5005 (days)
507-284-2511 (evenings)
e-mail: newsbureau@mayo.edu

Sara Lee | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.mayo.edu/

More articles from Health and Medicine:

nachricht Unique brain 'fingerprint' can predict drug effectiveness
11.07.2018 | McGill University

nachricht Direct conversion of non-neuronal cells into nerve cells
03.07.2018 | Universitätsmedizin der Johannes Gutenberg-Universität Mainz

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: 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....

Im Focus: Chemical reactions in the light of ultrashort X-ray pulses from free-electron lasers

Ultra-short, high-intensity X-ray flashes open the door to the foundations of chemical reactions. Free-electron lasers generate these kinds of pulses, but there is a catch: the pulses vary in duration and energy. An international research team has now presented a solution: Using a ring of 16 detectors and a circularly polarized laser beam, they can determine both factors with attosecond accuracy.

Free-electron lasers (FELs) generate extremely short and intense X-ray flashes. Researchers can use these flashes to resolve structures with diameters on the...

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

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

13.07.2018 | Event News

Research finds new molecular structures in boron-based nanoclusters

13.07.2018 | Materials Sciences

Algae Have Land Genes

13.07.2018 | Life Sciences

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>