There are two major areas of research in the division – basic science in renal immune injury and nanotechnology and clinical research in the areas of chronic kidney disease (CKD) and transplantation.
Basic science research at Rutgers RWJMS is concentrated on: a) achieving targeted expression of the cytoprotective enzyme Heme Oxygenase (HO)-1 in intrinsic glomerular cells and exploring whether this attenuates severity of glomerular immune injury. Impact: targeted HO-1 expression was achieved in glomerular epithelial cells. This was associated with attenuation of proteinuria in the mouse model of anti-GBM antibody induced rapidly progressive glomerulonephritis. b) Dr. Lianos during his leave of absence continued his work with the European Nanotechnology consortium exploring mechanisms of clearance of biocompatible, biodegradable, functionalized nanoparticles (NP) carrying drugs/genes once they have been administered in vivo. Two NP “clearance” systems have been evaluated: the reticuloendothelial system and the kidney. Impact: continued progress in exploration of reticuloendothelial system and kidney using nanotechnology.
Clinical research centered on clinical issues impacting patients with chronic kidney disease (CKD) and transplant related clinical research. Areas of interest studied this year have been: a) Anemia in CKD – Impact: improve management of anemia in hemodialysis patients with intravenous iron at ferritin levels of 500-1200 ng/mL and transferrin saturations of 25% or less, b) Dietary phosphate studies - Impact: analysis of phosphorus content of processed meat, poultry and fish products and better reporting of variable phosphorus content of these foods could result in improved dietary phosphate control in patients with advanced kidney disease, c) Immunosuppressive and antiviral regimens in transplant patients - Impact: improved immunosuppression regimens will improve care of transplant patients.