Cystatin C is a cysteine protease inhibitor that is produced by nearly all human cells. The serum level of cystatin C is a stronger predictor of the renal outcome and the risk of cardiovascular events than the creatinine level. The resistive index (RI) on renal Doppler ultrasonography is a good indicator of vascular resistance as well as the renal outcomes in patients with chronic kidney disease (CKD). However, it is unclear whether serum cystatin C is associated with signs of vascular dysfunction, such as the renal RI. We measured the serum cystatin C levels in 101 CKD patients and investigated the relationships between cystatin C and markers of vascular dysfunction, including the renal RI, ankle-brachial pulse wave velocity (baPWV), intima-media thickness (IMT), and cardiac function. The renal RI was significantly correlated with the serum cystatin C level (p < 0.0001, r = 0.6920). The serum cystatin C level was found to be a significant determinant of the renal RI (p < 0.0001), but not the baPWV, in a multivariate regression analysis. The multivariate odds ratio of the serum cystatin C level for a renal RI of more than 0.66 was statistically significant (2.92, p = 0.0106). The area under the receiver-operating characteristic curve comparing the sensitivity and specificity of cystatin C for predicting an RI of more than 0.66 was 0.882 (cutoff value: 2.04 mg/L). In conclusion, the serum cystatin C level is an independent biomarker associated with the renal RI in patients with CKD.
Ogawa-Akiyama, A., Sugiyama, H., Kitagawa, M., Tanaka, K., Onishi, A., Yamanari, T., … Wada, J. (2018). Serum cystatin C is an independent biomarker associated with the renal resistive index in patients with chronic kidney disease. PLoS ONE, 13(3). https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0193695