Multiplexed single-cell imaging in pediatric lupus nephritis
Administrative Supplement to Promote Diversity in Lupus Research was awarded to Olivia Bailey for her research contribution to this project.
Most kids with lupus develop kidney disease, but very few respond to currently available therapies. Grant support from the Lupus Research Alliance will allow Dr. Hsieh to use a new technology to map out individual immune cells in the kidneys of children with lupus—visual and quantitative guides of which immune cells are present and where they are. She plans to compare these two-dimensional maps with those from healthy children and those with other kidney diseases. Her hypothesis is that the kidneys of kids who have lupus and kidney disease have a unique structure. By mapping this structure, she hopes to understand how kidney disease develops in lupus so she can figure out how to treat children who develop kidney trouble. She’ll then correlate these kidney maps with the profiles of immune cells in blood, so that doctors will be able to do a simple blood test instead of invasive kidney biopsy to see how to determine which drugs to use.
What this study means for people with lupus
Dr. Hsieh’s goal of mapping what makes the structure of the lupus kidney unique, and how this uniqueness manifests in blood, should help researchers eventually develop better, more effective treatment options for children whose lupus leads to kidney failure.