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Tag Archives: Biomarkers —

Inflammatory biomarkers foreshadow CKD, study finds

Baker

March 2018—The central idea of the film Minority Report—that a “precrime” police unit can predict and prevent crimes—still mostly inhabits the realm of science fiction. Luckily, in medicine, researchers studying “predisease” can make headway on prevention by analyzing the laboratory test results from samples collected years earlier, when patients showed no clinical symptoms, that might have been able to predict disorders such as chronic kidney disease (CKD) in those patients.

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Procalcitonin passes automation hurdle

December 2016—Matt Damon in Interstellar. Julia Roberts in The Player. Gene Hackman in Young Frankenstein. When movie stars appear in uncredited parts, it’s usually for a cameo, not a leading role. But in diagnostics, an uncredited or off-label use of an assay might be its main use—possibly even its most clinically important use.

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Yale researchers dig for new kidney biomarkers

October 2016—An automated immunoassay has been created for symmetric dimethylarginine, or SDMA, a biomarker that can detect chronic kidney disease between 10 to 17 months earlier than creatinine, with 100 percent sensitivity and 91 percent specificity. And, unlike with creatinine, a patient’s muscle mass does not influence the biomarker’s reliability.

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For CKD, work is on to refine and find biomarkers

July 2015—Getting the upper hand on chronic kidney disease requires taking maximum advantageof existing CKD biomarker capabilities. It also means discovering new markers, though the trick is finding those that can expand treatment options. Some believe fibroblast growth factor-23 has the potential to fit that bill, with one researcher calling it “among the most exciting new targets in chronic kidney disease.”

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AKI risk biomarkers may be ‘as early as it gets’

June 2015—Last fall, the FDA cleared Astute Medical’s NephroCheck to pinpoint critically ill adults likely to manifest moderate to severe acute kidney injury within 12 hours. The urine biomarker test’s investigators believe NephroCheck will give clinicians the early warning signs they need to head off impending cases of AKI, though it remains to be seen whether that hoped-for prevention will bear out in clinical outcomes studies. One important laboratory hurdle to widespread use of the test is that it is performed on a countertop instrument separate from the automated line used for all other urinalyses.

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In predicting CKD risk, eGFR better when based on cystatin C

November 2013—Like turning around an ocean-going tanker, changing widely accepted testing practices in kidney disease, one of the nation’s most common disorders, may have to be done gradually. But the latest study comparing the biomarkers cystatin C and creatinine, published in the Sept. 5 New England Journal of Medicine (2013;369:932–943), is the most sweeping study to date and should provide new impetus to wider use of cystatin C.

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