Google+ Facebook Twitter Twitter

Role of glucose in a deadly kidney disease

A research team has developed a new approach to better understand the biology of polycystic kidney disease (PKD).

Scientists combined two ways to model the disorder – organ-in-a-dish and organ-on-a-chip technologies – to show the role of glucose, a sugar commonly found in blood, in forming PKD cysts.

The results could lead to better ways to test and develop treatments for PKD.

In PKD, tiny tubes (tubules) in the kidneys expand like water balloons, forming sacs of fluid over decades. The sacs, or cysts, eventually crowd out healthy tissue, leading to problems in kidney function and kidney failure. Scientists have identified many of the genes that cause PKD, but much about the disease remains unknown, including how the cysts form.

The group found that the cysts absorbed glucose and pulled in water from fluid passed over them. Although glucose is generally absorbed by the kidneys, glucose absorption has not been connected to cyst formation in PKD.

Image Credit | Shutterstock

Related Articles

The big question: How worried should we still be about COVID-19?

This month we ask: “How worried should we still be about COVID-19?”

Tech news: March 2023

This month's top tech news stories

“Cardiovascular deaths increased with COVID-19”

More people in the US died from cardiovascular-related causes in 2020, the first year of the COVID-19 pandemic, than in any year since 2003, according to the American Heart Association’s 2023 update.

Rapid, sensitive point-of-care-testing

Functionalised nanoparticles could soon revolutionise point-of-care diagnostics, it is claimed.