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.
As a convenient, effective and economical kidney replacement therapy for end-stage renal disease (ESRD), peritoneal dialysis is available in approximately 11% of ESRD patients worldwide. However, long-term peritoneal dialysis treatment causes peritoneal fibrosis. In recent years, the application potential of molecular hydrogen in the biomedicine has been well recognized. Molecular hydrogen selectively scavenges cytotoxic reactive oxygen species (ROS) and acts as an antioxidant. In this experiment, a high glucose-induced peritoneal fibrosis mouse model was successfully established by intraperitoneal injection of high glucose peritoneal dialysate, and peritoneal fibrosis mice were treated with hydrogen-rich peritoneal dialysate. In addition, in vitro studies of high glucose-induced peritoneal fibrosis were performed using MeT-5A cells. In vitro and in vivo experiments show that molecular hydrogen could inhibit peritoneal fibrosis progress induced by high glucose effectively. Furthermore, it has been found that molecular hydrogen alleviate fibrosis by eliminating intracellular ROS and inhibiting the activation of the PTEN/AKT/mTOR pathway. The present data proposes that molecular hydrogen exerts the capacity of anti-peritoneal fibrosis through the ROS/PTEN/AKT/mTOR pathway. Therefore, molecule hydrogen is a potential, safe, and effective treatment agent, with peritoneal protective property and great clinical significance.