Nav: Home

Growing evidence: water as a potential treatment for inherited cause of kidney failure

March 06, 2019

People with polycystic kidney disease (PKD) could benefit from a moderate increase in water intake, according to new research.

A study from The Westmead Institute for Medical Research found that a moderate increase in water intake in rats with PKD led to a long-term reduction in kidney cyst growth and fibrosis.

This latest findings add to the growing body of evidence that supports water as a safe and effective treatment for PKD.

Polycystic kidney disease is the most common inherited cause of end-stage kidney disease. It is a chronic condition, in which fluid-filled cysts damage healthy tissue and kidney function.

Left untreated, it can cause complications, including high blood pressure, heart problems and, in severe cases, kidney failure.

More than 2,000 Australians with PKD currently receive dialysis or need a kidney transplant.

Lead researcher Dr Priyanka Sagar said that water may be a potential treatment for PKD, because it stops the hormone responsible for cyst growth.

"Previous studies in animals haven't shown whether this benefit continues over time, and there is presently no evidence in humans," Dr Sagar said.

"Our research in rats showed that increased water intake reduces the long-term progression of cyst growth and kidney fibrosis when administered during the early stages of kidney disease.

"Significantly, we identified that only a moderate increase in water was needed to have this sustained benefit in rats."

The research also showed that increased water intake had secondary benefits for some complications associated with PKD.

"Interestingly, we found that increased water intake also reduced hypertension," Dr Sagar said.

"PKD is linked to an increased risk of cardiovascular disease, so this is an important protective effect."

Currently, treatment options for PKD in humans are limited. Dr Sagar said that further studies are needed in humans to prove that water is an effective treatment for kidney cysts.

"We're finding more evidence to support water as a viable treatment for PKD," she said.

"However, further studies are needed to determine its effectiveness.

"Water is cheap and accessible, so the idea that it could be used as a treatment for PKD in the future is very exciting," she concluded.
-end-
Drs. Annette Wong and Gopi Rangan (a kidney specialist) from Westmead Hospital and the Westmead Institute for Medical Research are currently leading a NHMRC-funded multi-centre clinical trial in Australia that will determine the effectiveness of increasing water intake in people with autosomal dominant polycystic kidney disease (ADPKD), and the final results of this study are expected in 2021.

The research paper was published in PLOS ONE:https://journals.plos.org/plosone/article/authors?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0209186

Dr Sagar is affiliated with The Westmead Institute, Westmead Hospital and the University of Sydney.

Westmead Institute for Medical Research

Related Kidney Disease Articles:

Combating chronic kidney disease with exercise
A University of Delaware research team is combating chronic kidney disease (CKD) with exercise.
A new mutation in kidney disease
Osaka University researchers find an unexpected mutation in proteins of the exosome could be a valuable biomarker for diagnosing the risk of kidney disease.
New answers for kids with inherited kidney disease
A new gene behind a rare form of inherited childhood kidney disease has been identified by a global research team.
Revealed: The biochemical pathways of kidney disease
In a study, recently published in PLOS Genetics, Chiara Gamberi and her coauthors developed an innovative fruit fly-based model of the types of harmful cysts that can form on kidneys.
Forging new defenses against diabetic kidney disease
Scientists at Joslin Diabetes Center have revealed an unexpected route to slow the progression of diabetic kidney disease, targeting a biological pathway that is the main channel for the metabolism of glucose in the cell.
Kidney disease is a major cause of cardiovascular deaths
In 2013, reduced kidney function was associated with 4 percent of deaths worldwide, or 2.2 million deaths.
A kidney disease's genetic clues are uncovered
Researchers at Columbia University Medical Center have identified genes that are linked to the underlying molecular defect in people with IgA nephropathy, an autoimmune kidney disease.
Beating kidney disease together
Chronic kidney disease is a frequently encountered disorder: more than 10% of the population suffer from such problems.
Reflux and ulcer medications linked to kidney stones and chronic kidney disease
Individuals who took proton pump inhibitors or histamine receptor-2 blockers for heartburn, acid reflux, or ulcers had elevated risks of developing kidney stones.
Method to create kidney organoids from patient cells provides insights on kidney disease
Scientists have developed a method to coax human pluripotent stem cells to mature into cells that go on to form the functional units of the kidney.

Related Kidney Disease Reading:

Best Science Podcasts 2019

We have hand picked the best science podcasts for 2019. Sit back and enjoy new science podcasts updated daily from your favorite science news services and scientists.
Now Playing: TED Radio Hour

Digital Manipulation
Technology has reshaped our lives in amazing ways. But at what cost? This hour, TED speakers reveal how what we see, read, believe — even how we vote — can be manipulated by the technology we use. Guests include journalist Carole Cadwalladr, consumer advocate Finn Myrstad, writer and marketing professor Scott Galloway, behavioral designer Nir Eyal, and computer graphics researcher Doug Roble.
Now Playing: Science for the People

#530 Why Aren't We Dead Yet?
We only notice our immune systems when they aren't working properly, or when they're under attack. How does our immune system understand what bits of us are us, and what bits are invading germs and viruses? How different are human immune systems from the immune systems of other creatures? And is the immune system so often the target of sketchy medical advice? Those questions and more, this week in our conversation with author Idan Ben-Barak about his book "Why Aren't We Dead Yet?: The Survivor’s Guide to the Immune System".