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Adv Ren Replace Ther. 2003 Oct;10(4):332-45.

Leptin, ghrelin, and proinflammatory cytokines: compounds with nutritional impact in chronic kidney disease?

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Division of Renal Medicine and Baxter Novum, Department of Clinical Science, Huddinge University Hospital, Sweden.


Metabolic and nutritional derangements are prominent features of the uremic syndrome. Recent evidence suggest that several large-molecular-weight molecules that often are elevated in uremia, such as leptin, ghrelin, and proinflammatory cytokines, may have nutritional impact in this patient group. On the basis of present knowledge, these compounds could be regarded as suspected but not established uremic toxins. The discovery of the ob gene, its product leptin, and cerebral leptin receptors has undoubtedly widened our understanding of obesity and the underlying molecular and physiologic mechanisms that regulate food intake and body weight. Moreover, the recent discovery of leptin receptor isoforms in several peripheral organs suggests that leptin besides having a central function also has several important peripheral biological functions. Because uremic patients in general have an inappropriate elevation of circulatory leptin, further research is necessary to determine the potential biological effects of elevated leptin levels in end-stage renal disease. Also, because many symptoms and findings prevalent in the uremic syndrome are known to be associated with elevated levels of proinflammatory cytokines, such as interleukin-6, future studies are needed to evaluate the role of specific anti-inflammatory treatment strategies in malnourished uremic patients.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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