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Clin Exp Pharmacol Physiol. 2011 Jul;38(7):441-50. doi: 10.1111/j.1440-1681.2011.05487.x.

Chronic kidney disease growth factors in renal fibrosis.

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Department of Nephrology Institute of Pathology, RWTH University of Aachen, Aachen, Germany.


1. The common pathological alteration in virtually every progressive chronic kidney disease (CKD) is renal fibrosis. 2. This review focuses on some growth factors, which are particularly well-established in contributing to fibrosis, such as the profibrotic, transforming growth factor-β, and connective tissue growth factor (CTGF), as well as the antifibrotic, bone morphogenic protein 7. The role of other growth factors is only starting to emerge (e.g. platelet-derived growth factor), and the role of yet others remains unclear (e.g. vascular endothelial growth factor). 3. Whether circulating or excreted, growth factors might serve as biomarkers of renal fibrosis and CKD remains largely unanswered. 4. Animal studies suggest that manipulation of growth factors might be an effective treatment option for patients with renal fibrosis and CKD. So far, only inhibition of CTGF is being tested in patients with diabetic nephropathy.

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