Starship research
Starship research
26 Jul

Study results from Starship research

26 July 2020

Results have been published from a study that looked at a urinary protein as an indicator of early kidney damage in children with CF.

A team at Starship Hospital conducted the prospective, single-blind study during 2016 and 2017. Children with CF are at risk of kidney damage because of the use of high dose antibiotics and other medications.

The current test to detect early kidney damage isn’t very sensitive and is hard to do in children. The team wanted to find out if the retinol-binding protein (RBP) in urine could be used as an early indication of kidney damage. This protein is released when kidney cells are damaged.

The study included 67 people with CF, aged 1–18, seen at Starship Hospital during their annual review. Healthy siblings of people with CF and orthopaedic patients from fracture clinic with no kidney or other health issues were used as the control group.

Statistical analysis was completed during 2019 and the final report was received late November.

Unfortunately, the conclusion from the study couldn’t confirm urinary RBP in children with CF is a good indicator of early kidney damage. 

The team’s abstract was accepted for presentation at the European Cystic Fibrosis Conference 2020 which was cancelled due to COVID-19. You can read the full abstract on page S131 in the Journal of Cystic Fibrosis, Supplement, June 2020.

CFNZ provided funding for this study and we thank everyone involved.