Researchers Discover New Biomarkers To Be Used In Detection of Lupus Nephritis

In Education

The University of Houston’s Chandra Mohan has discovered enhanced diagnostic biomarkers for early detection of lupus nephritis, crucial for timely intervention and reducing the associated pain, suffering, and mortality.

Lupus leads to skin, joints and kidney inflammation

Systemic Lupus Erythematosus (SLE) is an autoimmune disease characterized by the body attacking its own organs and tissues. The inflammation associated with lupus can affect various parts of the body, such as kin, joints, s kidneys, brain, blood cells, and heart. Lupus nephritis, a severe manifestation of SLE affecting the kidneys, is a leading cause of mortality.

Recent research, led by Professor Mohan from the University of Houston, has identified six new urine biomarkers for active renal lupus, validated across two ethnically diverse patient groups. This discovery was published in the Journal of Autoimmunity.

Mohan said they have documented a range of urine proteins indicative of renal implications in lupus. In this current study the researchers presented a novel pioneering technique, referred to as the Proximity Extension Assay (PEA), utilizing antibodies and DNA amplification for the identification of proteins, even at minimal concentrations.

Through the application of PEA proteomics to urine specimens, Mohan and the research team identified numerous proteins displaying notable elevation in individuals with lupus experiencing active renal disease.

More urine protein biomarkers for lupus discovered

The investigation provided independent affirmation of various previously documented urine biomarkers linked to active renal lupus. These markers encompass proteins such as ALCAM, CD163, SELL, MCP1, ICAM1, NGAL, VCAM1, and TWEAK. Furthermore, the researchers unveiled additional urine protein biomarkers not previously disclosed, including FABP4, ICAM-2, SELE, FASLG, IGFBP-2, and TNFSF13B/BAFF.

Analysis of the renal expression of these molecules suggests that both immune cells and non-immune cells within the kidneys may be responsible for releasing these biomarker proteins into the urine.

Mohan and his research team, comprising Yaxi Li (lead author), Dr. Ramesh Saxena from UT Southwestern in Dallas, Dr. Chi Chiu Mok from Tuen Mun Hospital in Hong Kong, and Claudia Pedroza and Kyung Hyun Lee from UTHealth Houston, have significantly broadened the spectrum of urinary proteins available for monitoring renal status in lupus patients.

Mobile Sliding Menu