[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Long-term kidney allograft survival has remained unchanged in recent years despite immunosuppressive and surgical advances. Ischaemia–reperfusion (IR) injury sustained at transplantation contributes to kidney damage that limits allograft lifespan. Interventions to reduce IR injury may prolong graft life, delaying the need for a return to dialysis. Remote ischaemic preconditioning (RIPC), in which brief episodes of non-lethal ischaemia applied to the limb activate a systemic protective reflex against subsequent damaging IR injury, has been reported to cause cardiac, renal and neurological protection in small-scale trials.
The REmote preconditioning for Protection Against Ischaemia–Reperfusion in renal transplantation (REPAIR) trial investigated whether RIPC improves kidney function and other outcomes following living-donor renal transplantation.
Multicentre, multinational, double-blind, 2 × 2 factorial designed randomised controlled trial.
Thirteen tertiary care hospitals in the UK, the Netherlands, Belgium and France.
The REPAIR trial recruited 406 live donor–recipient pairs aged ≥ 18 years. Patients on adenosine triphosphate (ATP)-sensitive potassium channel opening or blocking drugs, on ciclosporin, with a known iodine sensitivity or with ABO incompatibility or those requiring human leucocyte antigen (HLA) antibody removal therapy were excluded.
Each pair was randomised using a factorial design to one of four groups: sham RIPC, early RIPC (immediately before surgery), late RIPC (24 hours before surgery) and dual RIPC (early and late RIPC). The donor and recipient received the same intervention (active RIPC or sham RIPC) at the two time points.
Main outcome measures
The primary outcome was glomerular filtration rate (GFR) 12 months after transplantation measured by iohexol clearance. Important secondary outcomes were estimated GFR (eGFR) (using routine clinical assessment), safety, inflammatory cytokine profile and biological mechanisms.
In total, 406 donor–recipient pairs were randomised: 99 to sham RIPC, 102 to early RIPC, 103 to late RIPC and 102 to dual RIPC. Early RIPC resulted in a small but clinically important increase in iohexol GFR (ml/minute/1.73 m
) at 12 months, although the evidence is weak [58.3 vs. 55.9; adjusted difference 3.08, 95% confidence interval (CI) –0.89 to 7.04;
= 0.13], likely because of the higher than expected variability in the iohexol measurements. There was stronger evidence for a treatment effect when eGFR was used and missing values imputed (adjusted difference 3.41, 95% CI –0.21 to 7.04;
= 0.065) and when eGFR was used to assess kidney function (adjusted difference 4.98, 95% CI 1.13 to 8.29;
= 0.011). Late RIPC had no effect on renal outcomes, there was no benefit of combining early and late RIPC and RIPC had no effect on the inflammatory response to surgery. RIPC was safe and well tolerated by recipients and donors.
RIPC is a safe intervention in living-donor transplantation. The evidence for an effect of RIPC on GFR (primary outcome) was weak, but other measures of GFR (in our secondary analysis) provided persuasive evidence of a clinically meaningful improvement in kidney function after transplantation. Future work should investigate the role of RIPC in deceased-donor kidney transplantation.
Current Controlled Trials ISRCTN30083294.
This project was funded by the Efficacy and Mechanism Evaluation (EME) programme, a Medical Research Council and National Institute for Health Research partnership.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: In 1993, Przyklenk and colleagues made the intriguing experimental observation that ‘brief ischemia in one vascular bed also protects remote, virgin myocardium from subsequent sustained coronary artery occlusion’ and that this effect ‘…. may be mediated by factor(s) activated, produced, or transported throughout the heart during brief ischemia/reperfusion’. This seminal study laid the foundation for the discovery of ‘remote ischemic conditioning’ (RIC), a phenomenon in which the heart is protected from the detrimental effects of acute ischemia/reperfusion injury (IRI), by applying cycles of brief ischemia and reperfusion to an organ or tissue remote from the heart. The concept of RIC quickly evolved to extend beyond the heart, encompassing inter-organ protection against acute IRI. The crucial discovery that the protective RIC stimulus could be applied non-invasively, by simply inflating and deflating a blood pressure cuff placed on the upper arm to induce cycles of brief ischemia and reperfusion, has facilitated the translation of RIC into the clinical setting. Despite intensive investigation over the last 20 years, the underlying mechanisms continue to elude researchers. In the 8th Biennial Hatter Cardiovascular Institute Workshop, recent developments in the field of RIC were discussed with a focus on new insights into the underlying mechanisms, the diversity of non-cardiac protection, new clinical applications, and large outcome studies. The scientific advances made in this field of research highlight the journey that RIC has made from being an intriguing experimental observation to a clinical application with patient benefit.
Full-text · Article · Dec 2014 · Archiv für Kreislaufforschung
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Ischaemia-reperfusion (IR) injury is a composite of the injury sustained during a period of reduced or absent blood flow to a tissue or organ and the additional insult sustained upon reperfusion that limits the amount of tissue that can be salvaged. IR injury plays a central role in both native and transplant acute kidney injury (AKI). Native AKI is associated with increased morbidity and mortality in hospital inpatients, and transplant AKI contributes to graft dysfunction, ultimately limiting graft longevity. In this review, we discuss the potential therapeutic benefits of a cost-effective and low-risk intervention, remote ischaemic preconditioning (RIPC), and its applicability in the prevention and reduction of AKI.
Preview · Article · Oct 2014 · Pediatric Nephrology
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The endothelium plays a fundamental role in maintaining vascular homeostasis by releasing factors that regulate local blood flow, systemic blood pressure, and the reactivity of leukocytes and platelets. Accordingly, endothelial dysfunction underpins many cardiovascular diseases, including hypertension, myocardial infarction, and stroke. Herein, we evaluated mice with endothelial-specific deletion of Nppc, which encodes C-type natriuretic peptide (CNP), and determined that this mediator is essential for multiple aspects of vascular regulation. Specifically, disruption of CNP leads to endothelial dysfunction, hypertension, atherogenesis, and aneurysm. Moreover, we identified natriuretic peptide receptor-C (NPR-C) as the cognate receptor that primarily underlies CNP-dependent vasoprotective functions and developed small-molecule NPR-C agonists to target this pathway. Administration of NPR-C agonists promotes a vasorelaxation of isolated resistance arteries and a reduction in blood pressure in wild-type animals that is diminished in mice lacking NPR-C. This work provides a mechanistic explanation for genome-wide association studies that have linked the NPR-C (Npr3) locus with hypertension by demonstrating the importance of CNP/NPR-C signaling in preserving vascular homoeostasis. Furthermore, these results suggest that the CNP/NPR-C pathway has potential as a disease-modifying therapeutic target for cardiovascular disorders.
Full-text · Article · Aug 2014 · Journal of Clinical Investigation
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Background:
Pulmonary hypertension (PH) is a life-threatening disorder characterized by increased pulmonary artery pressure, remodeling of the pulmonary vasculature, and right ventricular failure. Loss of endothelium-derived nitric oxide (NO) and prostacyclin contributes to PH pathogenesis, and current therapies are targeted to restore these pathways. Phosphodiesterases (PDEs) are a family of enzymes that break down cGMP and cAMP, which underpin the bioactivity of NO and prostacyclin. PDE5 inhibitors (eg, sildenafil) are licensed for PH, but a role for PDE2 in lung physiology and disease has yet to be established. Herein, we investigated whether PDE2 inhibition modulates pulmonary cyclic nucleotide signaling and ameliorates experimental PH.
Methods and results:
The selective PDE2 inhibitor BAY 60-7550 augmented atrial natriuretic peptide- and treprostinil-evoked pulmonary vascular relaxation in isolated arteries from chronically hypoxic rats. BAY 60-7550 prevented the onset of both hypoxia- and bleomycin-induced PH and produced a significantly greater reduction in disease severity when given in combination with a neutral endopeptidase inhibitor (enhances endogenous natriuretic peptides), trepostinil, inorganic nitrate (NO donor), or a PDE5 inhibitor. Proliferation of pulmonary artery smooth muscle cells from patients with pulmonary arterial hypertension was reduced by BAY 60-7550, an effect further enhanced in the presence of atrial natriuretic peptide, NO, and treprostinil.
PDE2 inhibition elicits pulmonary dilation, prevents pulmonary vascular remodeling, and reduces the right ventricular hypertrophy characteristic of PH. This favorable pharmacodynamic profile is dependent on natriuretic peptide bioactivity and is additive with prostacyclin analogues, PDE5 inhibitor, and NO. PDE2 inhibition represents a viable, orally active therapy for PH.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: There is an increasing need to understand the leukocytes and soluble mediators that drive acute inflammation and bring about its resolution in humans. We therefore carried out an extensive characterisation of the cantharidin skin blister model in healthy male volunteers. A novel fluorescence staining protocol was designed and implemented, which facilitated the identification of cell populations by flow cytometry. We observed that at the onset phase, 24 h after blister formation, the predominant cells were CD16hi/CD66b+ PMNs followed by HLA-DR+/CD14+ monocytes/macrophages, CD11c+ and CD141+ dendritic cells as well as Siglec-8+ eosinophils. CD3+ T cells, CD19+ B cells and CD56+ NK cells were also present, but in comparatively fewer numbers. During resolution, 72 h following blister induction, numbers of PMNs declined whilst the numbers of monocyte/macrophages remain unchanged, though they upregulated expression of CD16 and CD163. In contrast, the overall numbers of dendritic cells and Siglec-8+ eosinophils increased. Post hoc analysis of these data revealed that of the inflammatory cytokines measured, TNF-α but not IL-1β or IL-8 correlated with increased PMN numbers at the onset. Volunteers with the greatest PMN infiltration at onset displayed the fastest clearance rates for these cells at resolution. Collectively, these data provide insight into the cells that occupy acute resolving blister in humans, the soluble mediators that may control their influx as well as the phenotype of mononuclear phagocytes that predominate the resolution phase. Further use of this model will improve our understanding of the evolution and resolution of inflammation in humans, how defects in these over-lapping pathways may contribute to the variability in disease longevity/chronicity, and lends itself to the screen of putative anti-inflammatory or pro-resolution therapies.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF) is a progressive fibro-proliferative disorder refractory to current therapy commonly complicated by the development of pulmonary hypertension (PH); the associated morbidity and mortality are substantial. Natriuretic peptides possess vasodilator and anti-fibrotic actions, and pharmacological augmentation of their bioactivity ameliorates renal and myocardial fibrosis. Here, we investigated whether natriuretic peptides possess an intrinsic cytoprotective function preventing the development of pulmonary fibrosis and associated PH, and whether therapeutics targeting natriuretic peptide signalling demonstrate efficacy in this life-threatening disorder. Pulmonary haemodynamics, right ventricular function and markers of lung fibrosis were determined in wild-type (WT) and natriuretic peptide receptor (NPR)-A knockout (KO) mice exposed to bleomycin (1 mg·kg−1). Human myofibroblast differentiation was studied in vitro. Exacerbated cardiac, vascular and fibrotic pathology was observed in NPR-A KO animals, compared with WT mice, exposed to bleomycin. Treatment with a drug combination that raised circulating natriuretic peptide levels (ecadotril) and potentiated natriuretic peptide-dependent signalling (sildenafil) reduced indices of disease progression, whether administered prophylactically or to animals with established lung disease. This positive pharmacodynamic effect was diminished in NPR-A KO mice. Atrial natriuretic peptide and sildenafil synergistically reduced TGFβ-induced human myofibroblast differentiation, a key driver of remodelling in IPF patients. These data highlight an endogenous host-defence capacity of natriuretic peptides in lung fibrosis and PH. A combination of ecadotril and sildenafil reversed the pulmonary haemodynamic aberrations and remodelling that characterize the disease, advocating therapeutic manipulation of natriuretic peptide bioactivity in patients with IPF.
Full-text · Article · Mar 2014 · British Journal of Pharmacology
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Background / Purpose:
Resolution of inflammation is an active process driven by cells, cytokines and lipid mediators. By inference, dysregulation of resolution programs may contribute to chronic inflammatory disorders. While many animal models exist to examine resolution, comparatively there are fewer human models. In this study, we present a detailed characterisation of cells, cytokines and lipid mediators controlling the onset and resolution phase of inflammation in humans using the cantharidin skin blister model.
Resolution, as defined by neutrophil clearance, depends on the intensity of inflammatory response at onset; mainly controlled by TNF-alpha; secretion by resident dermal macrophages/stromal cells.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Pulmonary hypertension (PH) is a debilitating disease with a dismal prognosis. Recent advances in therapy (e.g. prostacyclin analogues, endothelin receptor antagonists and phosphodiesterase 5 inhibitors), whilst significantly improving survival, simply delay the inexorable progression of the disease. An array of endogenous vasoconstrictors and vasodilators coordinates to maintain pulmonary vascular homeostasis and morphological integrity, and an imbalance in the expression and function of these mediators precipitates PH and related lung diseases. The vasodilator peptides, including natriuretic peptides, vasoactive intestinal peptide, calcitonin gene-related peptide and adrenomedullin, trigger the production of cyclic nucleotides (e.g. cGMP and cAMP) in many pulmonary cell types, which in tandem exert a multifaceted protection against the pathogenesis of PH, encompassing vasodilatation, inhibition of vascular smooth muscle proliferation, anti-inflammatory and anti-fibrotic effects and salutary actions on the right ventricle. This coordinated beneficial activity underpins a contemporary perception that to advance treatment of PH it is necessary to offset multiple disease mechanisms (i.e. the pulmonary vasoconstriction, pulmonary vascular remodelling, right ventricular dysfunction). Thus, there is considerable potential for harnessing the favourable activity of peptide mediators to offer a novel, efficacious therapeutic approach in PH.
No preview · Article · Oct 2013 · Handbook of experimental pharmacology
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: AimsTo evaluate the comparative efficacy (50% reduction in seizure frequency) and tolerability (premature withdrawal due to adverse events) of anti-epileptic drugs (AEDs) for refractory epilepsy. Methods
We searched Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials (Cochrane Library 2009, issue 2) including Epilepsy Group's specialized register, MEDLINE (1950 to March 2009), EMBASE (1980 to March 2009), and Current Contents Connect (1998 to March 2009) to conduct a systematic review of published studies, developed a treatment network and undertook a network meta-analysis. ResultsForty-three eligible trials with 6346 patients and 12 interventions, including placebo, contributed to the analysis. Only three direct drug comparator trials were identified, the remaining 40 trials being placebo-controlled. Conventional random-effects meta-analysis indicated all drugs were superior in efficacy to placebo (overall odds ratio (OR] 3.78, 95% CI 3.14, 4.55) but did not permit firm distinction between drugs on the basis of the efficacy or tolerability. A Bayesian network meta-analysis prioritized oxcarbazepine, topiramate and pregabalin on the basis of short term efficacy. However, sodium valproate, levetiracetam, gabapentin and vigabatrin were prioritized on the basis of short-term efficacy and tolerability, with the caveat that vigabatrin is recognized as being associated with serious visual disturbance with chronic use. Conclusion
Of the wide range of AEDs licensed for the treatment of refractory epilepsy, sodium valproate, levetiracetam and gabapentin demonstrated the best balance of efficacy and tolerability. Until regulators mandate greater use of active comparator trials with longer term follow-up, network meta-analysis provides the only available means to quantify these clinically important parameters.
No preview · Article · Jan 2013 · British Journal of Clinical Pharmacology
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Mechanistic studies may be defined as ‘an experiment, using an intervention in healthy subjects or patients, to better understand human biology and/or disease’. Such studies provide useful physiological insights into clinical conditions in humans and expand our knowledge of physiology in health and disease. Well-planned mechanistic studies are therefore a vital step in progressing drug discovery in humans. It is important in such studies that the rights and safety of research participants are preserved, while at the same time not allowing lengthy and complex approval procedures to stifle and potentially prohibit this type of research.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Atherosclerosis is the major cause of morbidity and mortality worldwide. Endothelial dysfunction is central to the pathogenesis of atherosclerosis, initiating a triad of lipid accumulation in the vessel wall, a co-existent inflammatory response and proliferation of smooth muscle cells. It has also been implicated in the precipitation of acute ischaemia, and the determination of the extent of injury following such complications. Healthy endothelium regulates numerous blood vessel functions, including vascular tone, cell adhesiveness, and coagulation through the production of mediators. The best characterised of these are the vasodilators, nitric oxide (NO), prostacyclin, and endothelium derived hyperpolarising factor, and the vasoconstrictors thromboxane and endothelin. The endothelium itself may also be maintained by bone-marrow derived endothelial progenitor cells (EPC) which are mobilised in response to vascular injury and have angiogenic and proliferative properties. Understanding of the biology of the endothelium in atherosclerosis has led to new treatments and more may follow. Work is ongoing into NO bioavailability, prostacyclin agonists, endothelin and thromboxane antagonists, novel antiinflammatory and anti-oxidative agents as well as means of harnessing the properties of EPCs. It is hoped that this research will yield clinically useful approaches that will retard the progression of atherosclerosis and reduce the incidence or consequences of acute complications.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Pulmonary hypertension (PH) is a multifactorial disease characterized by increased pulmonary vascular resistance and right ventricular failure; morbidity and mortality remain unacceptably high. Loss of nitric oxide (NO) bioactivity is thought to contribute to the pathogenesis of PH, and agents that augment pulmonary NO signaling are clinically effective in the disease. Inorganic nitrate (NO(3)(-)) and nitrite (NO(2)(-)) elicit a reduction in systemic blood pressure in healthy individuals; this effect is underpinned by endogenous and sequential reduction to NO. Herein, we determined whether dietary nitrate and nitrite might be preferentially reduced to NO by the hypoxia associated with PH, and thereby offer a convenient, inexpensive method of supplementing NO functionality to reduce disease severity.
Dietary nitrate reduced the right ventricular pressure and hypertrophy, and pulmonary vascular remodeling in wild-type mice exposed to 3 weeks of hypoxia; this beneficial activity was mirrored largely by dietary nitrite. The cytoprotective effects of dietary nitrate were associated with increased plasma and lung concentrations of nitrite and cGMP. The beneficial effects of dietary nitrate and nitrite were reduced in mice lacking endothelial NO synthase or treated with the xanthine oxidoreductase inhibitor allopurinol.
These data demonstrate that dietary nitrate, and to a lesser extent dietary nitrite, elicit pulmonary dilatation, prevent pulmonary vascular remodeling, and reduce the right ventricular hypertrophy characteristic of PH. This favorable pharmacodynamic profile depends on endothelial NO synthase and xanthine oxidoreductase -catalyzed reduction of nitrite to NO. Exploitation of this mechanism (ie, dietary nitrate/nitrite supplementation) represents a viable, orally active therapy for PH.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Ischemia-reperfusion injury is a composite of damage accumulated during reduced perfusion of an organ or tissue and the additional insult sustained during reperfusion. Such injury occurs in a wide variety of clinically important syndromes, such as ischemic heart disease and stroke, which are responsible for a high degree of morbidity and mortality worldwide. Basic research has identified a number of interventions that stimulate innate resistance of tissues to ischemia-reperfusion injury. Here, we summarise the experimental and clinical trial data underpinning one of these "conditioning" strategies, the phenomenon of remote ischemic preconditioning.
Preview · Article · Feb 2012 · Cardiology Research and Practice
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Reecha Sofat and colleagues argue that prescribing advice needs updating in the light of recent evidence that all classes of blood pressure lowering drugs are broadly equivalent