The presence of endotoxin in blood can lead to acute kidney injury (AKI) and septic shock. Resolvins, the endogenous lipid mediators derived from docosahexaenoic acid, have been reported to exhibit potent anti-inflammatory action.

Using a mouse model of lipopolysaccharide (LPS)-induced AKI, we investigated the effects of aspirin-triggered resolvin D1 (AT-RvD1) on inflammatory kidney injury. Administration of AT-RvD1 1h after LPS challenge protected the mice from kidney injury as indicated by the measurements of blood urea nitrogen, serum creatinine, and morphological alterations associated with tubular damage. The protective effects were evidenced by decreased neutrophil infiltration in the kidney indicating reduction in inflammation.

AT-RvD1 treatment restored kidney cell junction protein claudin-4 expression, which was otherwise reduced after LPS challenge. AT-RvD1 treatment inhibited endotoxin-induced NF-κB activation and suppressed LPS-induced ICAM-1 and VCAM-1 expression in the kidney. Moreover, AT-RvD1 treatment markedly decreased LPS-induced IL-6 level in the kidney and blocked IL-6-mediated signaling including STAT3 and ERK phosphorylation.

Our findings demonstrate that AT-RvD1 is a potent anti-inflammatory mediator in LPS-induced kidney injury, and AT-RvD1 has therapeutic potential against AKI during endotoxemia.