Goal 2: Reduce Human Disease

Can transcutaneous carboxyhemoglobin measure endogenous heme oxygenase activity?

Non-invasive measurement of transcutaneous carboxyhemoglobin (SpCO) by CO-oximetry has been shown to reflect disease activity in asthma, allergic rhinitis, Staphylococcal pneumonia/sepsis and to correlate positively with lung function in cystic fibrosis. Given published studies of heme oxygenase activity in these diseases as a reflection of oxidant or inflammatory activity, does measurement of SpCO reflect endogenous heme oxygenase activity, thus making it a simple, non-invasive way to follow this parameter?

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Is this idea a Compelling Question (CQ) or Critical Challenge (CC)?: Compelling Question (CQ)

Details on the impact of addressing this CQ or CC:

Laboratory measurement of heme oxygenase activity in inflammatory and states of oxidative activity in multiple disease states, lung diseases for instance, has become important in measuring disease severity and activity as well as being an indicator of disease modification by gene polymorphisms of heme oxygenase. The simple measurement of transcutaneous carboxyhemoglobin if correlated with heme oxygenase activity would provide a ready assessment for clinicians in the clinical setting.

Feasibility and challenges of addressing this CQ or CC:

In a setting in which heme oxygenase activity is measured and clinical patients of varying diseases are available, this question could be answered reasonably easily without technical difficulty.

Name of idea submitter and other team members who worked on this idea: Lawrence E. Kurlandsky, MD


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Idea No. 373