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Int Urol Nephrol. 2011 Jun;43(2):441-9. doi: 10.1007/s11255-011-9929-6. Epub 2011 Mar 10.

Allopurinol, uric acid, and oxidative stress in cardiorenal disease.

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Division of Nephrology and Dialysis, Department of Medicine III, Medical University Vienna, Währinger Gürtel 18-20, A 1090 Vienna, Austria.


In humans, the hepatic end product of purine metabolism is uric acid. Serum uric acid levels physiologically and gradually rise during human lifetime. Hyperuricemia also arises from excess dietary purine or ethanol intake, decreased renal excretion of uric acid, tumor lysis in lymphoma, leukemia or solid tumors, and sometimes pharmacotherapy. The definition of hyperuricemia is currently arbitrary. Hyperuricemia is associated with chronic kidney disease, arterial hypertension, coronary artery and heart disease, cerebrovascular disease and diabetes mellitus. Xanthine oxidase, a hepatic enzyme, catalyzes the production of uric acid, nitric oxide, and reactive oxygen species, which potentially damage deoxyribonucleic acid, ribonucleic acid and proteins, inactivate enzymes, oxidize amino acids and convert poly-unsaturated fatty acids to lipids. This is believed to contribute to atherosclerosis, endothelial dysfunction, renovascular hypertension, and cardiovascular disease. Xanthine oxidase inhibition efficiently blocks uric acid generation, and this improves glomerular filtration rates, systemic blood pressure, and cerebro-cardiovascular outcomes. Here, data from animal, in vivo, retro- and prospective, and interventional studies are reported.

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