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Revealed: 35 kidney genes linked to chronic kidney disease risk

An international study led by University of Manchester scientists has discovered the identity of genes that predispose people to chronic kidney disease.
The discovery is a major advance in understanding the significantly under-diagnosed disorder which, if left undetected, can lead to failing kidneys that need dialysis or kidney transplantation.
The discovery of 35 kidney genes is an important step forward to the future development of new diagnostic tests and treatments for the disease that affects around one in ten adults.
The team, based in Poland, Australia and the UK have published the Kidney Research UK-funded study in Nature Communications.
Lead researcher Professor Maciej Tomaszewski from The University of Manchester said: “Chronic kidney disease is known for its strong genetic component. Our limited knowledge of its exact genetic mechanisms partly explains why progress in the development of new diagnostic tests and treatments of chronic kidney disease has been so slow. The findings were made possible by using a state-of-the art technology known as “next-generation RNA sequencing” applied to one of the largest ever collections of human kidneys. We hope that some of the kidney genes we discovered may become attractive targets for the development of future diagnostics and treatment for patients with chronic kidney disease.”
Co-author Professor Adrian Woolf from Manchester Children’s Hospital and The University of Manchester said: “One of the genes - mucin-1- is especially interesting. It makes a sticky protein called mucin that coats urinary tubes inside the kidney. Mutations of this gene have already been found in rare families with inherited kidney failure.”

University of Manchester