Selective iNOS inhibition for the treatment of sepsis-induced acute kidney injury.

Nature reviews. Nephrology

PubMedID: 19786992

Heemskerk S, Masereeuw R, Russel FG, Pickkers P. Selective iNOS inhibition for the treatment of sepsis-induced acute kidney injury. Nat Rev Nephrol. 2009;5(11):629-40.
The incidence and mortality of sepsis and the associated development of acute kidney injury (AKI) remain high, despite intense research into potential treatments. Targeting the inflammatory response and/or sepsis-induced alterations in the (micro)circulation are two therapeutic strategies. Another approach could involve modulating the downstream mechanisms that are responsible for organ system dysfunction. Activation of inducible nitric oxide (NO) synthase (iNOS) during sepsis leads to elevated NO levels that influence renal hemodynamics and cause peroxynitrite-related tubular injury through the local generation of reactive nitrogen species. In many organs iNOS is not constitutively expressed; however, it is constitutively expressed in the kidney and, in humans, a relationship between the upregulation of renal iNOS and proximal tubular injury during systemic inflammation has been demonstrated. For these reasons, the selective inhibition of renal iNOS might have important implications for the treatment of sepsis-induced AKI. Various animal studies have demonstrated that selective iNOS inhibition-in contrast to nonselective NOS inhibition-attenuates sepsis-induced renal dysfunction and improves survival, a finding that warrants investigation in clinical trials. In this Review, the selective inhibition of iNOS as a potential novel treatment for sepsis-induced AKI is discussed.