Urine marker to the rescue

Sci. Signal.  08 Dec 2015:
Vol. 8, Issue 406, pp. ec365
DOI: 10.1126/scisignal.aad9932

Chronic kidney disease is a common medical problem worldwide, but it is difficult to predict which patients are more likely to progress to end-stage disease and need aggressive management. Ju et al. used four independent cohorts, totaling hundreds of patients from around the world, to identify the expression of the gene encoding epidermal growth factor (EGF) in the kidneys as a marker of kidney disease progression. Moreover, measuring the amount of EGF in the urine was just as useful, providing a biomarker that can be easily tracked over time without requiring invasive biopsies.

W. Ju, V. Nair, S. Smith, L. Zhu, K. Shedden, P. X. K. Song, L. H. Mariani, F. H. Eichinger, C. C. Berthier, A. Randolph, J. Y.-C. Lai, Y. Zhou, J. J. Hawkins, M. Bitzer, M. G. Sampson, M. Thier, C. Solier, G. C. Duran-Pacheco, G. Duchateau-Nguyen, L. Essioux, B. Schott, I. Formentini, M. C. Magnone, M. Bobadilla, C. D. Cohen, S. M. Bagnasco, L. Barisoni, J. Lv, H. Zhang, H.-Y. Wang, F. C. Brosius, C. A. Gadegbeku, M. Kretzler, for the ERCB, C-PROBE, NEPTUNE, and PKU-IgAN Consortium, Tissue transcriptome-driven identification of epidermal growth factor as a chronic kidney disease biomarker. Sci. Transl. Med. 7, 316ra193 (2015). [Abstract]