Hydrogen has a significant protective effect on calcium oxalate-induced renal injury, but its effect on metabolic profiles is unknown. This study showed the effects of hydrogen on serum and urine metabolites in a renal injury model. Ultra-HPLC quadrupole time-of-flight-MS-based metabolomics was used to characterise metabolic variations. Twenty-five serum metabolites and 14 urine metabolites showed differences in the the nitrogen and oxygen inhalation (NO), nitrogen and oxygen inhalation combined with calcium oxalate induction (CaOx), and hydrogen inhalation combined with calcium oxalate induction (HO+CaOx) groups. Nineteen serum metabolites and 7 urine metabolites showed significant restoration to normal levels after hydrogen gas (H2) treatment. These metabolites are primarily related to amino acid metabolism, fatty acid metabolism, and phospholipid metabolism. This study showed that a comprehensive metabolomics approach is an effective strategy to elucidate the mechanisms underlying the effects of hydrogen treatment on calcium oxalate-induced renal injury.
Objective: To explore the theraputic effects and potential mechanisms of hydrogen-rich water (HRW) against oxalate-induced kidney injury. Methods: The mouse model of Calcium oxalate (CaOx) crystallization was established by feeding a soluble oxalate diet. Crystal deposition, tubular injury, fibrosis and reactive oxygen species (ROS) production in kidneys were examined by histology. Serum indexes of renal injury, inflammation and oxidative stress were detected by commercial kits. RNA sequencing (RNA-seq) was performed to screen potential pathways and the expressions of key molecules in these pathways were determined by western blotting and immunohistochemistry. Results: Crystal deposition, tubular injury, fibrosis and increased ROS production in kidneys of mice induced by oxalate diet were improved with HRW administration. The indexes of renal injury, inflammation and oxidative stress in serum of mice were upregulated by oxalate diet, which were reduced by HRW. A total of 3,566 differential genes were screened by RNA-seq and these genes were analyzed by pathway enrichment and PI3K/AKT, NF-κB, and TGF-β pathways were selected for further verification. The expressions of molecules related to PI3K-AKT pathway (PI3K, AKT, and p-AKT), NF-κB pathway (NF-κB p65, p- NF-κB p65, NLRP3, and IL-1β) and TGF-β pathway (TGF-β, TGF-βRI, TGF-βRII, p-Smad2, and p-Smad3) in renal tissues were increased by oxalate diet, which were reduced by HRW administration. Conclusion: HRW may alleviate oxalate-induced kidney injury with its anti-oxidative, anti-inflammatory and anti-fibrotic effects via inhibiting PI3K/AKT, NF-κB, and TGF-β pathways.