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Am J Nephrol. 2010;31(6):541-50. Epub 2010 May 18.
Role of the intrarenal renin-angiotensin-aldosterone system in chronic kidney disease.
Siragy HM, Carey RM.
Department of Medicine, University of Virginia Health System, Charlottesville, USA. firstname.lastname@example.org
The existence of local or tissue-based renin-angiotensin-aldosterone systems (RAAS) is well documented and has been implicated as a key player in the pathogenesis of cardiovascular and renal diseases. The kidney contains all elements of the RAAS, and intrarenal formation of angiotensin II not only controls glomerular hemodynamics and tubule sodium transport, but also activates a number of inflammatory and fibrotic pathways. Experimental and clinical studies have shown that the intrarenal RAAS is activated early in diabetic nephropathy, the leading cause of chronic kidney disease (CKD). Although angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitors and angiotensin receptor blockers decrease the rate of decline in kidney function in patients with diabetic and non-diabetic nephropathy, many patients still progress to end-stage renal disease or die from cardiovascular events.
There is still a clear need for additional strategies to block the RAAS more effectively to reduce progression of CKD. The focus of this paper is to review the importance of the intrarenal RAAS in CKD and recent findings in renin-angiotensin biology pertinent to the kidney. We also discuss additional strategies to inhibit the RAAS more effectively and the potential impact of direct renin inhibition on the prevention and management of CKD.