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Curr Opin Nephrol Hypertens. 2004 May;13(3):337-41.

The importance of family history on the development of renal disease.

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Department of Internal Medicine/Nephrology, Wake Forest University School of Medicine, Winston-Salem, North Carolina 27157-1053, USA.



Family history of end-stage renal disease is an important risk factor for the subsequent development of nephropathy. Multiply-affected families with members demonstrating end-stage renal disease often contain individuals with disparate etiologies of renal disease. These observations have led to the search for nephropathy susceptibility genes.


Genetic loci associated with susceptibility to diabetic (3q, 18q22.3-23) and non-diabetic nephropathy (chromosome 10) have been identified. A mutation in the uromodulin gene (16p11-13) has recently been linked to medullary cystic kidney disease type 2 and familial juvenile hyperuricemic nephropathy. Familial focal segmental glomerulosclerosis is linked to the 1q25-31, 11q21-22, and 19q13 loci in different families. Several research groups are evaluating family members of individuals with nephropathy in an attempt to uncover previously undiagnosed cases of renal disease.


Family members of individuals with chronic kidney disease are disproportionately affected with unrecognized and asymptomatic nephropathy. Screening of these high-risk relatives for early nephropathy, and for risk factors for nephropathy, will probably lead to successful treatment for nephropathy and slow the growing worldwide epidemic of end-stage renal disease.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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