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Am J Kidney Dis. 2001 Jan;37(1):113-118.

Effect of ACE gene polymorphism on age at renal death in polycystic kidney disease in Japan.

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Third Department of Internal Medicine, Fukui Medical University, Fukui, Japan.


Polycystic kidney disease (PKD) is one of the most common genetic disorders and a major cause of renal death or end-stage renal disease (ESRD) requiring regular hemodialysis. The responsible genes recently have been cloned; however, genetic factors influencing the rate of progression to ESRD in patients with PKD have yet to be defined. Several studies have shown increased activity of the renin-angiotensin system (RAS) in patients with PKD. In addition, genetic polymorphisms of the RAS have been associated with the development of cardiovascular diseases. Therefore, these polymorphisms are good candidates for disease-modifying genetic factors or markers in PKD. In two previous reports of white subjects with a cumulative survival analysis, it was suggested that patients with P:KD1 homozygous for the deletion allele of the angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE) gene are at increased risk for early renal death. To confirm this hypothesis in Japanese subjects, 103 individuals with PKD were genotyped for several components of the RAS, ie, ACE insertion/deletion (I/D) polymorphism, angiotensinogen (AGT) M235T, and angiotensin II type 1 receptor (AT1) A1166C. Seventy-six of the 103 patients (73.8%) reached ESRD at an average age of 52.1 +/- 11.3 years. The frequencies of each genotype of the genes were similar to those expected from Hardy-Weinberg equilibrium. There was a tendency to an excess of patients homozygous for the D allele in patients with ESRD (DD in patients with ESRD, 11.8%; DD in patients without ESRD, 3.7%; chi-square, 1.505; P: = 0.22). Cumulative renal survival was significantly less in those with the DD genotype compared with ID/II genotypes. Estimated mean renal survival was 46.4 years (95% confidence interval, 39.5 to 53.3) in subjects with the DD genotype and 57.2 years (95% confidence interval, 54.2 to 60.2) in ID/II genotypes (chi-square, 7.76; P: = 0.0053). There was no association between age at onset of ESRD and either M235T or A1166C polymorphism. These findings suggest that Japanese patients with PKD homozygous for the D allele of the ACE gene are at increased risk for developing ESRD at an early age.

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