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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Peripheral distribution of kynurenine metabolites and activity of kynurenine pathway enzymes in renal failure.

We investigated L-kynurenine distribution and metabolism in rats with experimental chronic renal failure of various severity, induced by unilateral nephrectomy and partial removal of contralateral kidney cortex. In animals with renal insufficiency the plasma concentration and the content of L-tryptophan in homogenates of kidney, liver, lung, intestine and spleen were significantly decreased. These changes were accompanied by increase activity of liver tryptophan 2,3-dioxygenase, the rate-limiting enzyme of kynurenine pathway in rats, while indoleamine 2,3-dioxygenase activity was unchanged. Conversely, the plasma concentration and tissue content of L-kynurenine, 3-hydroxykynurenine, and anthranilic, kynurenic, xanthurenic and quinolinic acids in the kidney, liver, lung, intestine, spleen and muscles were increased. The accumulation of L-kynurenine and the products of its degradation was proportional to the severity of renal failure and correlated with the concentration of renal insufficiency marker, creatinine. Kynurenine aminotransferase, kynureninase and 3-hydroxyanthranilate-3,4-dioxygenase activity was diminished or unchanged, while the activity of kynurenine 3-hydroxylase was significantly increased. We conclude that chronic renal failure is associated with the accumulation of L-kynurenine metabolites, which may be involved in the pathogenesis of certain uremic syndromes.[1]


  1. Peripheral distribution of kynurenine metabolites and activity of kynurenine pathway enzymes in renal failure. Pawlak, D., Tankiewicz, A., Matys, T., Buczko, W. J. Physiol. Pharmacol. (2003) [Pubmed]
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