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Physiol Genomics. 2013 Oct 1;45(19):877-88. doi: 10.1152/physiolgenomics.00076.2013. Epub 2013 Aug 6.

Cell cycle arrest in a model of colistin nephrotoxicity.

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  • 1Divisions of Nephrology and Clinical Pharmacology, Indiana University, Indianapolis, Indiana;


Colistin (polymixin E) is an antibiotic prescribed with resurging frequency for multidrug resistant gram negative bacterial infections. It is associated with nephrotoxicity in humans in up to 55% of cases. Little is known regarding genes involved in colistin nephrotoxicity. A murine model of colistin-mediated kidney injury was developed. C57/BL6 mice were administered saline or colistin at a dose of 16 mg/kg/day in 2 divided intraperitoneal doses and killed after either 3 or 15 days of colistin. After 15 days, mice exposed to colistin had elevated blood urea nitrogen (BUN), creatinine, and pathologic evidence of acute tubular necrosis and apoptosis. After 3 days, mice had neither BUN elevation nor substantial pathologic injury; however, urinary neutrophil gelatinase-associated lipocalin was elevated (P = 0.017). An Illumina gene expression array was performed on kidney RNA harvested 72 h after first colistin dose to identify differentially expressed genes early in drug treatment. Array data revealed 21 differentially expressed genes (false discovery rate < 0.1) between control and colistin-exposed mice, including LGALS3 and CCNB1. The gene signature was significantly enriched for genes involved in cell cycle proliferation. RT-PCR, immunoblot, and immunostaining validated the relevance of key genes and proteins. This murine model offers insights into the potential mechanism of colistin-mediated nephrotoxicity. Further studies will determine whether the identified genes play a causative or protective role in colistin-induced nephrotoxicity.


cell cycle; colistin; galectin-3; nephrotoxicity; polymyxin E; renal failure

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