Johns Hopkins researchers have developed the basis of an inexpensive, simple urine test that identifies impending kidney failure or rejection following transplant surgery. Their work, presented this week in a special invited lecture to the American Transplant Congress in Boston, Mass., is based on proteins found in urine, and could lead to a urine test kit that may allow many patients to skip painful biopsies.
"This has the potential to radically change the way transplant patients are managed," says study co-author Ernesto P. Molmenti, M.D., Ph.D., associate professor of surgery at Johns Hopkins. "Frequent, noninvasive monitoring could allow doctors to better tailor immunosuppression drugs according to individual patients needs, prescribing lower doses to more stable patients or increasing doses for patients who show early signs of rejection."
Molmenti estimates that the test, when developed, will be far less expensive, safer and much less painful than a standard biopsy costing hundreds of dollars in which a doctor inserts a long needle into a patients side to obtain a kidney tissue sample.
Trent Stockton | EurekAlert!
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