Mitochondrial transplantation by intra-arterial injection for acute kidney injury

Ilias P. Doulamis, Alvise Guariento, Thomas Duignan, Takashi Kido, Arzoo Orfany, Mossab Y. Saeed, Viktoria H. Weixler, David Blitzer, Borami Shin, Erin R. Snay, James A. Inkster, Alan B. Packard, David Zurakowski, Thomas Rousselle, Amandeep Bajwa, Samir M. Parikh, Isaac E. Stillman, Pedro J. del Nido, James D. McCully

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

48 Scopus citations


Acute kidney injury is a common clinical disorder and one of the major causes of morbidity and mortality in the postoperative period. In this study, the safety and efficacy of autologous mitochondrial transplantation by intra-arterial injection for renal protection in a swine model of bilateral renal ischemia-reperfusion injury were investigated. Female Yorkshire pigs underwent percutaneous bilateral temporary occlusion of the renal arteries with balloon catheters. Following 60 min of ischemia, the balloon catheters were deflated and animals received either autologous mitochondria suspended in vehicle or vehicle alone, delivered as a single bolus to the renal arteries. The injected mitochondria were rapidly taken up by the kidney and were distributed throughout the tubular epithelium of the cortex and medulla. There were no safety-related issues detected with mitochondrial transplantation. Following 24 h of reperfusion, estimated glomerular filtration rate and urine output were significantly increased while serum creatinine and blood urea nitrogen were significantly decreased in swine that received mitochondria compared with those that received vehicle. Gross anatomy, histopathological analysis, acute tubular necrosis scoring, and transmission electron microscopy showed that the renal cortex of the vehicle-treated group had extensive coagulative necrosis of primarily proximal tubules, while the mitochondrial transplanted kidney showed only patchy mild acute tubular injury. Renal cortex IL-6 expression was significantly increased in vehicle-treated kidneys compared with the kidneys that received mitochondrial transplantation. These results demonstrate that mitochondrial transplantation by intra-arterial injection provides renal protection from ischemia-reperfusion injury, significantly enhancing renal function and reducing renal damage.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)F403-F413
JournalAmerican Journal of Physiology - Renal Physiology
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jul 2020
Externally publishedYes


  • Acute kidney injury
  • Ischemia-reperfusion injury
  • Mitochondrial transplantation
  • Renal

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physiology
  • Urology


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