The study was carried out at the Faculty of Internal Medicine II, CECAD Cluster of Excellence in Aging Research, and the Cologne Center for Molecular Medicine (CMMC) at the University of Cologne.
The paper ‘A systematic analysis of diet-induced renal protection reveals overlapping changes in cysteine catabolism’ was published in the journal Translational Research. The study was carried out by the Else Kröner-Fresenius Foundation.
Acute kidney injury It is a very common and dangerous disease, often leading to hospitalization and death.
As a disease related to aging, cases of acute kidney injury have increased rapidly in recent years. Despite the immediate danger to the patient, there is currently no treatment or prevention. However, there is a growing body of data showing that nutrition and especially specific diets can help protect organs from damaging effects such as inadequate blood flow, infections, side effects, and more. of medication or surgery.
However, to date there has been no direct comparison between different diets in preventing kidney damage.
The six diets tested were: (1) Fast-mimicking diet (FMD), also known as mock fasting, (2) ketogenic, high-fat and reduced-carbohydrate diet, (3) reduced intake of the branched-chain amino acid valine, leucine, and isoleucine, (4 and 5) the two sulfur-containing amino acid-restricted diets methionine and cysteine, and (6) calorie restriction with generally reduced calorie intake.
The researchers were able to show that FMD, sulfur amino acid restriction, and calorie restriction are effective in protecting against kidney damage in animal models.
The common feature of all diets is not only their ability to prolong life, which is known in different models of organisms, but also their medicinal use in humans. Therefore, their preventive use in the treatment of acute kidney injury could make a significant contribution as a new treatment option for patients.
“The problem of not having an effective treatment for acute kidney injury is something we encounter every day in the clinic. We are excited about the amazing positive effects that diet has in the model. animal”. Professor Dr. Roman-Ulrich Müller, senior physician at the Department of Internal Medicine II of the University Hospital Cologne said.
Additionally, the scientists were able to identify a possible mechanism for how the diet protects against kidney damage.
“Tested approaches reveal overlapping changes in the oxidative and hydrogen sulfide (H2S)-dependent degradation of the amino acid cysteine, which is a common organ defense mechanism that may be involved. and create new pharmacological targets for the treatment of acute kidney injury” Dr. Felix Köhler, lead author of the study, added.
To be able to apply this nephroprotective approach to the clinic, an interdisciplinary team of doctors and basic researchers has begun a clinical trial at Cologne University Hospital between donors kidney.