Foundation funds kidney research

04/03/2012

Following advice from the South West Thames Kidney Fund, we purchased a Nanodrop Spectrophotometer machine in August 2011 to help with kidney research at St Heliers Hospital in Carshalton, Surrey.

Patrick himself suffered from a mild form of kidney disease and we saw this as an under researched area that would benefit from our support.

On the 18th August 2011 The Patrick Evans Foundation trustees visited the Institute to see the machine in action, and met Mark Dockrell and Felicia Heidebrecht from the Institute and Mike Bending, Chairman of the Kidney Fund.

 

The machine enables scientists to work with tiny amounts of RNA (the crucial part of DNA within cells which passes on messages) to investigate how changes take place in cells, and therefore how to prevent these.

Cells are a precious resource and in searching for a cure for kidney disease complicated tests have to be performed on human kidney cells.

 

The Nanodrop allows researchers to accurately measure the amount of protein, RNA or DNA in tiny volumes, wasting fewer samples. With the machine, researchers can use as little as 1 microlitre (1 millionth of a litre) of a sample compared with around 25 microlitres previously. To put that in perspective, a raindrop is 60 microlitres so the Nanodrop uses 2% of an average size raindrop. Without it some of the tests would have to be postponed or even abandoned.