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World Kidney Day 2019 ! A Few Breakthroughs in Kidney Research Treatments

Battling a kidney disease is never easy and yet people go through this condition sometimes for a few years or even for a whole lifetime. However, scientists are making huge progress in contributing to treatments that may change the lives of Kidney disease patients both now and in the near future.

Since the world is celebrating World Kidney Day, we like to give you some good news regarding the new upcoming treatments that are being developed to treat Kidney diseases.

Scientists discover new ways to regrow damaged kidneys

In an attempt to regrow damaged kidneys, scientists from the University of Virgina School of Medicine have discovered that blocked kidneys in newborns have a unique ability to repair themselves after the obstruction is removed. Some of these results offer insights into how that happens and could eventually help doctors regenerate kidneys in adults.

A strange phenomenon was observed in blocked kidneys like if the kidney had an obstruction and remained obstructed, its vasculature would shrink and the other unobstructed kidney would grow more branches like as if it were trying to compensate. And once the obstruction was released then the vessels (vasculature) of the previously obstructed kidney starts regenerating and then grows rapidly initiating the regeneration of the whole kidney.

Researchers observed how quickly and effectively the newborn mice’s damaged kidneys could repair themselves. Next, they identified precursor cells that played critical roles in that process, and are now working on creating the human version of the cells to perform similar kidney repairs in both adults and children.

In the early stages of kidney development, there were more precusors found than the usual. Researchers are still studying the developing kidney or the early postnatal kidney which could later give cues as of how to push the precursors or how to awaken precursors in the adult to regenerate and maintain the kidney function.

Prediction Tool for Kidney Stones

Kidney stones are a common and painful condition experienced by many people around the world.  Worse, the condition is also recurring and people may experience this at some even later in their lives.

People who may be cured from the condition are still keen on knowing whether this could occur again, however predicting this has not always been easy.

Mayo Clinic researchers are tracking the familiar characteristics of kidney stone former patients in an online prediction tool that could help sufferers predict if they may experience future episodes.

Common features seen in patients with recurrent stone episodes included younger age, the male gender, a higher BMI, history of pregnancy, and a family history of stones. Researchers also noted that the stone condition would likely increase after each subsequent event including the size and location of stones linked with the risk of future episodes.

They then combined these features to develop a Recurrence of Kidney Stone online prediction tool and were now able to properly determine a future stone formation. According to one researcher,  by entering information such as gender, race and an individual’s kidney stone history, the tool could now generate an estimate of the recurrence.

According to the researcher, each of the risk factors they identified was entered into the model, which then calculated an estimate of the risk of having another kidney stone in the next 5 or 10 years. 

Since the risk of a kidney stone recurrence is dependent on individual factors, this information can benefit patients when deciding the kind of precautionary measures to decrease the risk of stone recurrence.

The tool which is available online or as an app also can be used in research studies to identify those individuals who may be more prone to a kidney stone attack.