Scientific reports

Quantitating intracellular oxygen tension in vivo by phosphorescence lifetime measurement.

PMID 26644023


Hypoxia appears to have an important role in pathological conditions in many organs such as kidney; however, a method to quantify intracellular oxygen tension in vivo has not been well established. In this study, we established an optical method to quantify oxygen tension in mice kidneys using a cationic lipophilic phosphorescence probe, BTPDM1, which has an intracellular oxygen concentration-sensitive phosphorescence lifetime. Since this probe is distributed inside the tubular cells of the mice kidney, we succeeded in detecting acute renal hypoxic conditions and chronic kidney disease. This technique enabled us to estimate intracellular partial pressures of oxygen in vivo by extrapolating the calibration curve generated from cultured tubular cells. Since intracellular oxygen tension is directly related to cellular hypoxic reactions, such as the activation of hypoxia-inducible factors, our method will shed new light on hypoxia research in vivo.