Preventing the long-term consequences of Acute Kidney Injury

Acute kidney injury (AKI) is common and has a high mortality rate. People that recover their kidney function have a higher risk of developing chronic kidney disease (CKD).

There are currently no treatments that can reduce the risk of this progression. In this project , funded by the Medical Research Council, we identified sustained activation of the endothelin system in patients suffering from AKI. Endothelin is a powerful vasoconstrictor that also has pro-inflammatory and pro-fibrotic actions. We therefore gave endothelin-blocking drugs to mice with AKI and found that this prevented the transition to CKD by reducing kidney inflammation. This project indicates that giving endothelin receptor blockers early after AKI might be beneficial in preventing development of CKD in patients and we are currently investigating this in our Clinical research Facility.  

Link to paper