Exploring the Cost-Utility of a Biomarker Predicting Persistent Severe Acute Kidney Injury: The Case of C-C Motif Chemokine Ligand 14 (CCL14)

Jorge Echeverri, Rui Martins*, Kai Harenski, J. Patrick Kampf, Paul McPherson, Julien Textoris, Jay L. Koyner

*Corresponding author for this work

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

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    Background: Approximately 24% of hospitalized stage 2–3 acute kidney injury (AKI) patients will develop persistent severe AKI (PS-AKI), defined as KDIGO stage 3 AKI lasting ≥3 days or with death in ≤3 days or stage 2 or 3 AKI with dialysis in ≤3 days, leading to worse outcomes and higher costs. There is currently no consensus on an intervention that effectively reverts the course of AKI and prevents PS-AKI in the population with stage 2–3 AKI. This study explores the cost-utility of biomarkers predicting PS-AKI, under the assumption that such intervention exists by comparing C-C motif chemokine ligand 14 (CCL14) to hospital standard of care (SOC) alone. 

    Methods: The analysis combined a 90-day decision tree using CCL14 operating characteristics to predict PS-AKI and clinical outcomes in 66-year-old patients, and a Markov cohort estimating lifetime costs and quality-adjusted life years (QALYs). Cost and QALYs from admission, 30-day readmission, intensive care, dialysis, and death were compared. Clinical and cost inputs were informed by a large retrospective cohort of US hospitals in the PINC AI Healthcare Database. Inputs and assumptions were challenged in deterministic and probabilistic sensitivity analyses. Two-way analyses were used to explore the efficacy and costs of an intervention preventing PS-AKI. 

    Results: Depending on selected costs and early intervention efficacy, CCL14-directed care led to lower costs and more QALYs (dominating) or was cost-effective at the $50,000/QALY threshold. Assuming the intervention would avoid 10% of PS-AKI complications in AKI stage 2–3 patients identified as true positive resulted in 0.066 additional QALYs and $486 reduced costs. Results were robust to substantial parameter variation. 

    Conclusion: The analysis suggests that in the presence of an efficacious intervention preventing PS-AKI, identifying people at risk using CCL14 in addition to SOC is likely to represent a cost-effective use of resources.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)1-12
    Number of pages12
    JournalClinicoEconomics and Outcomes Research
    Publication statusPublished - Jan-2024


    • acute kidney injury
    • biomarkers
    • cost effectiveness
    • dialysis
    • nephrology

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