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Age (Dordr). 2015 Aug;37(4):9808. doi: 10.1007/s11357-015-9808-7. Epub 2015 Jul 19.

Aging and low-grade inflammation reduce renal function in middle-aged and older adults in Japan and the USA.

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University of Wisconsin, Madison, WI, USA.


The objective of this study was to investigate the effects of low-grade inflammation on age-related changes in glomerular filtration rate (GFR) in middle-aged and older white Americans, African-Americans, and Japanese adults. Serum creatinine, C-reactive protein (CRP), and interleukin-6 (IL-6) levels were determined for 1570 adult participants in two surveys of aging in the USA and Japan (N = 1188 and 382, respectively). Kidney function declined with age in both countries and was associated with IL-6 and CRP. IL-6 and CRP also influenced the extent of the arithmetic bias when calculating the GFR using the chronic kidney disease epidemiology (CKD-EPI) formula with just serum creatinine. Younger African-Americans initially had the highest GFR but showed a steep age-related decrement that was associated with elevated inflammation. Japanese adults had the lowest average GFR but evinced a large effect of increased inflammatory activity when over 70 years of age. Importantly, our results also indicate that low-grade inflammation is important to consider when evaluating kidney function solely from serum creatinine.

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