Navigation Links
Kidney damage and high blood pressure

Bethesda, Md. (Sept. 22, 2011) The kidney performs several vital functions. It filters blood, removes waste products from the body, balances the body's fluids, and releases hormones that regulate blood pressure. A number of diseases and conditions can damage the kidney's filtration apparatus, such as diabetes and immune disorders. This damage leads to a condition called nephrotic syndrome, which is characterized by protein in the urine, high cholesterol and triglycerides, and swelling (edema). People with nephrotic syndrome retain salt and water in their bodies and develop swelling and high blood pressure as a result.

Scientists have now begun to understand kidney damage on a cellular level and how the activity of certain molecules in damaged kidneys contributes to salt and water retention in nephrotic syndrome. Several new insights in this area of research will be presented at the7th International Symposium on Aldosterone and the ENaC/Degenerin Family of Ion Channels, being held September 18-22 in Pacific Grove, Calif. The meeting is sponsored by the American Physiological Society.

Faulty Filtration

The kidneys are marvels of filtration, processing roughly 150 to 200 quarts of blood each day through tiny structures called nephrons. There are about 1 million nephrons per kidney, and each nephron consists of a filtering unit of blood vessels called a glomerulus, which is attached to a tubule. Filtered blood enters the tubule, where various substances are either added to or removed from the filtrate as necessary, and most of the filtered sodium and water is removed. The filtrate that exits the tubule is excreted as urine.

In nephrotic syndrome, a damaged filtration barrier allows substances that are not normally filtered to appear in the filtrate. One of these substances is the protein plasminogen, which is converted in kidney tubules to the protease plasmin. In their research, Thomas R. Kleyman, Professor of Medicine and of Cell biology and Physiology at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine and the Symposium's co-organizer, and Ole Sktt, Professor of Physiology and Pharmacology and Dean at the University of Southern Denmark in Odense, independently found that plasmin plays a role in activating the epithelial sodium channel (ENaC) on cells in the nephron. ENaC is a protein embedded in cell membranes that facilitates the absorption of filtered sodium from tubules. When ENaC is becomes overactive, excessive absorption of filtered sodium may lead to sodium and water retention.

According to Dr. Kleyman, these findings provide an explanation of how damage to the glomeruli in the kidney's nephrons leads to edema and high blood pressure. Dr. Kleyman explains: "When plasminogen is cleaved, it can act on several targets. One of those targets is ENaC. Another is the protein prostasin, which, once cleaved, will activate ENaC, as well."

Dr. Kleyman noted the implications these findings have for treating edema and high blood pressure in patients suffering from nephrotic syndrome. "This is important because if plasmin activates ENaC, it suggests that targeting ENaC in the kidneys with ENaC inhibitors may be a treatment option."


Contact: Donna Krupa
American Physiological Society

Related medicine news :

1. Urine protein test might help diagnose kidney damage from lupus, UT Southwestern researchers find
2. New drug for kidney transplant recipients effective in humans
3. Drug for advanced kidney cancer shrinks tumors prior to surgery
4. Obesity -- mild or severe -- raises kidney stone risk
5. VARI findings may help patients with deadly kidney cancer
6. Kidneys From Older Donors Suitable for Seniors
7. Comparison shows robot-assisted option offers advantages for kidney surgery
8. Walk KidneyWise Los Angeles to Help Launch KidneyWise with Fundraising Walk in Santa Monica
9. Board Certified Renal Specialist, Nina Kolbe, Publishes Second Edition of Kidney Health Gourmet: A Diet Guide and Kidney Friendly Recipes for People Not on Dialysis
10. American Kidney Fund Raises Awareness, Honors Kidney Heroes during National Kidney Month
11. National Kidney Month 2010: Stories of Hope About the Prevention and Maintenance of Kidney Disease from The Kidney TRUST
Post Your Comments:
(Date:12/1/2015)... ... December 01, 2015 , ... The workstation boundaries for ... IMAGE Information Systems launches MED-TAB™ -- the world’s first portable DICOM-calibrated medical image ... 29 to December 4, 2015. , MED-TAB is expected to change teleradiology ...
(Date:12/1/2015)... ... , ... The importance of volumetric breast density assessment for ... abstracts accepted for presentation here, at the 101st Annual Radiology Society of North ... of Volpara Solutions’ quantitative breast imaging software tools for providing breast imaging and ...
(Date:12/1/2015)... ... December 01, 2015 , ... For ... That is why Hollister Incorporated has launched the VaPro Plus Pocket™ touch free ... in the VaPro touch free catheter portfolio,” said Michael Gresavage, Vice President North ...
(Date:12/1/2015)... ... December 01, 2015 , ... SAN FRANCISCO, Calif. (December 1, ... organization has awarded Education and Developmental Therapies (EDT), an Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) ... exceptional special needs providers that excel in synthesizing the areas of clinical quality, ...
(Date:12/1/2015)... ... December 01, 2015 , ... McLean, ... been awarded a fixed price per sprint agile development contract to support the ... million over five years, provides software engineering, infrastructure, as well as operations and ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:12/1/2015)... During the recent 2015 Transcatheter Cardiovascular ... CA , Medinol Ltd. continued to introduce ... a satellite symposium, "The BioNIR eDES: The Role ... a renowned physician panel discussed the key attributes ... Stent System and the Medinol eDES Coronary Stent ...
(Date:12/1/2015)... YORK , Dec. 1, 2015 Relmada Therapeutics, ... the treatment of chronic pain, announced today that the company ... will be held December 1-3 at the Luxe Sunset Boulevard ... Sergio Traversa , CEO of Relmada Therapeutics, will present on ... Eastern Time). . Please register at least ...
(Date:12/1/2015)... Dec. 1, 2015  InCarda Therapeutics, Inc. (InCarda), a ... of therapies for cardiovascular conditions via the inhalation route, ... in Australia . InCarda is planning ... Australia in the first half of ... medical centers in Adelaide and ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: