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Adv Chronic Kidney Dis. 2013 Nov;20(6):488-99. doi: 10.1053/j.ackd.2013.06.001.

Nanosized contrast agents to noninvasively detect kidney inflammation by magnetic resonance imaging.

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Department of Medicine, University of Colorado-Denver School of Medicine, Aurora, CO; and Department of Anesthesiology, University of Colorado-Denver School of Medicine, Aurora, CO. Electronic address:


Several molecular imaging methods have been developed that use nanosized contrast agents to detect markers of inflammation within tissues. Kidney inflammation contributes to disease progression in a wide range of autoimmune and inflammatory diseases, and a biopsy is currently the only method of definitively diagnosing active kidney inflammation. However, the development of new molecular imaging methods that use contrast agents capable of detecting particular immune cells or protein biomarkers will allow clinicians to evaluate inflammation throughout the kidneys and to assess a patient's response to immunomodulatory drugs. These imaging tools will improve our ability to validate new therapies and to optimize the treatment of individual patients with existing therapies. This review describes the clinical need for new methods of monitoring kidney inflammation and recent advances in the development of nanosized contrast agents for the detection of inflammatory markers of kidney disease.


Imaging; Inflammation; Kidney; Magnetic resonance imaging; Nanoparticle

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