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The isolated perfused canine kidney has been established as a valid model for conducting both renal physiology and transplantation research. This model is of particular importance for developing new strategies to improve graft function after renal transplantation. In the present study, a newly developed method using isolated haemoperfused porcine kidneys was adapted for use in canine kidneys. In contrast to haemoperfusion, synthetic perfusion media can be standardized and can prevent the initiation of blood-mediated reperfusion reactions. Thus, an additional aim was to determine whether blood could be replaced by synthetic cell-free perfusion solutions.
Canine kidneys (n = 30) were harvested from donors euthanized in veterinary practices for causes unrelated to the present study. The kidneys were isolated and perfused with autologous blood or cell-free synthetic electrolyte buffer (Tyrode solution). During perfusion, we monitored renal perfusate flow (RPF), glomerular filtration rate (GFR), electrolyte and glucose reabsorption, oxygen consumption and urine concentration.
Changes in perfusion medium did not affect the RPF. In contrast, GFR, urine concentration and oxygen consumption were significantly higher, whereas fractional excretion of sodium and glucose were significantly lower in blood- than in Tyrode-perfused kidneys.
This system offers a simple model for studying whole-organ functional alterations after acute renal ischaemia. Renal function indicators were below values reported during in vivo physiological conditions. These functions were better conserved when kidneys were perfused with autologous blood than with Tyrode.