Living kidney donors and hypoxia-inducible factor-1α

Carla Baan*, Teun van Gelder, Annemiek Peeters, Wendy Mol, Hubert Niesters, Willem Weimar, Jan IJzermans

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

21 Citations (Scopus)


Hypoxia inducible factor (HIF)-1, a heterodimeric transcription factor composed of α and β subunits, is induced in the adaptive response to hypoxia and is critical for initiating the transcriptional activation of growth factors. We speculate that prolonged ischemia and hypoxia time leads to the production of HIF-1α, which in turn induces the production of fibrogenic cytokines in the graft.

To investigate our hypothesis, we measured the expression of HIF-1α in time-zero biopsy specimens from living-donor kidneys (≤2.5 hr of ischemia) and cadaveric donor kidneys (12–32 hr of ischemia).

By real time reverse-transcriptase polymerase chain reaction analysis, the mRNA expression level of HIF-1α was fivefold lower in time-zero biopsy specimens from living-donor kidneys than in specimens from cadaveric donor kidneys. In these time-zero biopsy specimens, the mRNA expression level of the fibrogenic cytokine transforming growth factor-β was also significantly lower (twofold).

Low HIF-1α mRNA expression levels correlate with short ischemia times and prevent the transcription of fibrogenic cytokines that initiate the irreversible process of graft fibrosis.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)570-571
Number of pages2
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 27 Feb 2003

Bibliographical note

A commentary on this article by Dicken D.H. Koo and Susan V. Fuggle was published in the same issue on pages 437-438 (DOI: 10.1097/01.TP.0000046148.25741.E2).

© 2003 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.

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