Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Rapamycin may be potential treatment for kidney disease

Date:
January 31, 2010
Source:
University of California - Santa Barbara
Summary:
New research points to the drug rapamycin as a potential treatment for kidney disease. The study builds on past research and shows that studies performed on mice are more likely to translate to humans than previously thought.

On the left is a normal mouse kidney. In the center is a polycystic mouse kidney. On the right is a polycystic mouse kidney after treatment with rapamycin.
Credit: UCSB

Research performed at UC Santa Barbara points to the drug rapamycin as a potential treatment for kidney disease. The study builds on past research and shows that studies performed on mice are more likely to translate to humans than previously thought. The results are published in the current online issue of the Journal of the American Society of Nephrology.

Related Articles


Over 600,000 people in the U.S., and 12 million worldwide, are affected by the inherited kidney disease known as ADPKD, short for autosomal-dominant polycystic kidney disease. In the U.S., the number of individuals affected by ADPKD is greater than the number affected by cystic fibrosis, muscular dystrophy, hemophilia, Down's syndrome, and sickle cell anemia combined. The disease is characterized by the proliferation of cysts that eventually debilitate the kidney, causing kidney failure in half of all patients by the time they reach age 50.

Currently, no treatment exists to prevent or slow cyst formation, and most ADPKD patients require kidney transplants or lifelong dialysis for survival, explained Thomas Weimbs, director of the laboratory where the discovery was made. Weimbs is an associate professor in the Department of Molecular, Cellular and Developmental Biology and the Neuroscience Research Institute at UCSB.

The drug rapamycin, also called sirolimus, is currently used as an immunosuppressant, to help prevent rejection of a new, transplanted kidney.

"While we had previously shown that rapamycin is highly effective in mouse models of polycystic kidney disease, the problem had been that these mice had different genes affected than human patients," said Weimbs. "Therefore, the question always remained whether rapamycin would be effective in patients, too. Our new study now is the first to show that rapamycin is also highly effective in a new mouse model in which the same gene is affected as in most human patients."

Currently, there are several clinical trials ongoing internationally to test the safety and efficacy of rapamycin and related drugs in polycystic kidney disease, explained Jonathan Shillingford, UCSB project scientist in the Department of Molecular, Cellular and Developmental Biology, and first author on the paper. First results from these studies are expected to appear this year. The scientists hope that these drugs will prove to be beneficial. "But it will be critical to balance any benefits against the expected side effects to judge whether these drugs should be recommended for the treatment of polycystic kidney disease," he said.

The Weimbs lab has studied rapamycin in mice for several years. "To our surprise, treatment of our polycystic kidney mice with rapamycin resulted not only in a halt of further cyst growth but also appeared to partially reverse the already existing kidney deterioration," said Weimbs. "We had seen this previously in a different mouse model but were very positively surprised that this effect can be replicated in our new model."

Two scientists from Johns Hopkins University were co-authors of the article: Klaus B. Piontek and Gregory Germino.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University of California - Santa Barbara. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

University of California - Santa Barbara. "Rapamycin may be potential treatment for kidney disease." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 31 January 2010. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/01/100125144607.htm>.
University of California - Santa Barbara. (2010, January 31). Rapamycin may be potential treatment for kidney disease. ScienceDaily. Retrieved March 5, 2015 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/01/100125144607.htm
University of California - Santa Barbara. "Rapamycin may be potential treatment for kidney disease." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/01/100125144607.htm (accessed March 5, 2015).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Health & Medicine News

Thursday, March 5, 2015

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Bupa Eyes India Healthcare Opportunities

Bupa Eyes India Healthcare Opportunities

Reuters - Business Video Online (Mar. 5, 2015) — Bupa is hoping to expand in India&apos;s fast-growing health insurance market, once a rule change on foreign investment is implemented. The British private healthcare group&apos;s CEO tells Grace Pascoe why it&apos;s so keen on the new opportunity. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Doctor in Your Pocket Is Getting Smarter

Doctor in Your Pocket Is Getting Smarter

Reuters - Business Video Online (Mar. 5, 2015) — Mobile apps are turning smartphones into a personal doctors, with users able to measure heart rate, blood pressure and even blood sugar. But will it change our behaviour? Ivor Bennett reports from the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
AbbVie Inks $21B Deal To Buy Cancer Drugmaker Pharmacyclics

AbbVie Inks $21B Deal To Buy Cancer Drugmaker Pharmacyclics

Newsy (Mar. 5, 2015) — AbbVie announced Wednesday it will buy cancer drugmaker Pharmacyclics in a $21 billion deal. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Adults Only Get The Flu Twice A Decade, Researchers Say

Adults Only Get The Flu Twice A Decade, Researchers Say

Newsy (Mar. 4, 2015) — Researchers found adults only get the flu about once every five years. Scientists analyzed how a person&apos;s immunity builds up over time as well. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
 
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:  

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories

 

Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:  

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile iPhone Android Web
Follow Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins