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BMC Nephrol. 2014 May 3;15:69. doi: 10.1186/1471-2369-15-69.

Mineral bone disorder in chronic kidney disease: head-to-head comparison of the 5/6 nephrectomy and adenine models.

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Nephrology Department, Universidade de São Paulo, Rua Iperoig, 690, apto 121, São Paulo, Brazil.



Experimental models are important to the understanding of the pathophysiology of, as well as the effects of therapy on, certain diseases. In the case of chronic kidney disease-mineral bone disorder, there are currently two models that are used in evaluating the disease: 5/6 nephrectomy (Nx) and adenine-induced renal failure (AIRF). However, the two models have never been compared in studies using animals maintained under similar conditions. Therefore, we compared these two models, focusing on the biochemical, bone histomorphometry, and vascular calcification aspects.


Wistar rats, initially fed identical diets, were divided into two groups: those undergoing 5/6 Nx (5/6Nx group) and those that were switched to an adenine-enriched diet (AIRF group). After 9 weeks, animals were sacrificed, and we conducted biochemical and bone histomorphometry analyses, as well as assessing vascular calcification.


At sacrifice, the mean body weight was higher in the 5/6Nx group than in the AIRF group, as was the mean blood pressure. No differences were seen regarding serum phosphate, ionized calcium, intact parathyroid hormone (PTH), or fibroblast growth factor 23 (FGF23). However, creatinine clearance was lower and fractional excretion of phosphate (FeP) was higher in the AIRF group rats, which also had a more severe form of high-turnover bone disease. Vascular calcification, as evaluated through von Kossa staining, was not observed in any of the animals.


Overt vascular calcification was not seen in either model as applied in this study. Under similar conditions of diet and housing, the AIRF model produces a more severe form of bone disease than does 5/6 Nx. This should be taken into account when the choice is made between these models for use in preclinical studies.

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