Division of Nephrology

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Experimental and Clinical Radiation Nephropathy

Eric Cohen, MD, John Moulder, PhD (Radiation Biology, MCW), and John Imig, PhD (Pharmacology, MCW) continue their focused research investigation in the pathogenesis and therapy of radiation nephropathy. This work is funded by the NIH and the VA.

The research activities for this area are:

  • To develop treatment for radiation injury to the kidney. Research by this group has shown that normal tissue radiation injury can be treated or mitigated, which is 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. Analogs of epoxyeicosatrienoic acid (EET) have shown promise. 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.
     
  • Recent U.S. Government interest in radionuclear terrorism lead to NIH funding 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 extended the study of normal tissue radiation injury to lung, brain and skin, and involves multiple centers, including MCW, Detroit, and Toronto.
     
  • This group is also studying radiation injury to the lung, both experimental and clinical. With Meetha Medhora, PhD, therapies and mitigators of radiation pneumonitis are being tested in experimental models. Clinical studies in collaboration with Elizabeth Gore, MD (Radiation Oncology, MCW) have shown that ACE inhibitors reduce normal tissue injury to the lung in subjects undergoing radiotherapy for lung cancer.
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