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A nephroprotective iodinated contrast agent with cardioprotective properties: A pilot study

Background and purpose: Evaluation and treatment of acute ischemic syndromes, in the heart and brain, require vessel visualization by iodinated X-ray contrast agents. However, these contrast agents can induce injury, in both the kidneys and target organs themselves. Sulfobutylether beta cyclodextrin (SBECD) added to iohexol (SBECD-iohexol) (Captisol Enabled-iohexol, Ligand Pharmaceuticals, Inc, San Diego, CA) is currently in clinical trials in cardiovascular procedures, to determine its relative renal safety in high-risk patients. Preclinical studies showed that SBECD-iohexol reduced contrast-induced acute kidney injury in rodent models by blocking apoptosis. The current study was undertaken to determine whether SBECD-iohexol is also cardioprotective, in the male rat ischemia-reperfusion model, compared to iohexol alone.

Methods: After anesthesia, the left coronary artery was ligated for 30 min and the ligation released and reperfusion followed for 2 h prior to sacrifice. Groups 1-4 were injected in the tail vein 10 min prior to ischemia with: (1) vehicle; (2) iohexol; (3) SBECD; and (4) SBECD-iohexol. Infarct size, hemodynamics, and serum markers were measured.

Results: An eight-fold increase in serum creatine kinase in the iohexol-alone group was observed, compared with no increase in the SBECD-iohexol group. The mean arterial pressure and rate pressure product were depressed in the iohexol-alone group, but not in the SBECD-iohexol group, or controls. No difference in infarct size or serum creatinine among the groups was observed.

Conclusion: The results of this study suggest that SBECD-iohexol is superior to iohexol alone, for both the preservation of cardiomyocyte integrity and preservation of myocardial function in myocardial ischemia.