Experimental and Clinical Radiation Nephropathy
Drs. Eric Cohen and John Moulder (Radiation Biology, MCW) continue their focused research investigation in the pathogenesis and therapy of radiation nephropathy. This work, funded by the NIH, has its origins in a model of radiation nephropathy established by Dr. Moulder in the 1980s.
The research activities for this area are:
i. Investigations are being performed on therapeutic options for radiation injury to the kidney. Research by this group has shown that normal tissue radiation injury could be treated or mitigated, which was until recently a novel concept in radiation biology. Treatments and mitigators have included angiotensin-converting-enzyme (ACE) inhibitors such as captopril, and angiotensin II type 1 receptor antagonists, such as L-158,809. Dr. Cohen recently completed a controlled trial showing the benefit of captopril to reduce chronic renal failure after human bone marrow transplantation. Current experimental work centers on mechanistic studies of the renin-angiotensin system in radiation nephropathy.
ii. Recent U.S. Government interest in radionuclear terrorism lead to a request for proposals from the NIH for studies of normal tissue radiation injury. Dr. Moulder, along with Dr. Cohen, and others from MCW, were successful in securing funding for this effort, which is extending the study of normal tissue radiation injury to lung, brain and skin, involves multiple centers, including MCW, Detroit, and Toronto, and includes agents that are active on oxygen radicals.
iii. This group is also studying radiation injury to the lung, both experimental and clinical. With Dr Meetha Medhora, therapies and mitigators of radiation pneumonitis are being tested in experimental models. Clinical studies have shown that ACE inhibitors reduce normal tissue injury to the lung in subjects undergoing radiotherapy for lung cancer.