A common variant of the PAX2 gene is associated with reduced newborn kidney size.

Montreal Children's Hospital Research Institute, 4060 Saint Catherine West, PT-413, Montreal, Quebec, Canada.
Journal of the American Society of Nephrology (Impact Factor: 8.99). 07/2007; 18(6):1915-21. DOI: 10.1681/ASN.2006101107
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Congenital nephron number ranges widely in the human population. Suboptimal nephron number may be associated with increased risk for essential hypertension and susceptibility to renal injury, but the factors that set nephron number during kidney development are unknown. In renal-coloboma syndrome, renal hypoplasia and reduced nephron number are due to heterozygous mutations of the PAX2 gene. This study tested for an association between a common haplotype of the PAX2 gene and subtle renal hypoplasia in normal newborns. A PAX2 haplotype was identified to occur in 18.5% of the newborn cohort, which was significantly associated with a 10% reduction in newborn kidney volume adjusted for body surface area. This haplotype was also associated with reduced allele-specific PAX2 mRNA level in a human renal cell carcinoma cell line. Subtle renal hypoplasia in normal newborns may be partially due to a common variant of the PAX2 gene that reduces mRNA expression during kidney development.

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    ABSTRACT: Developmental programming of non-communicable diseases is now an established paradigm. With respect to hypertension and chronic kidney disease, adverse events experienced in utero can affect development of the fetal kidney and reduce final nephron number. Low birthweight and prematurity are the most consistent clinical surrogates for a low nephron number and are associated with increased risk of hypertension, proteinuria, and kidney disease in later life. Rapid weight gain in childhood or adolescence further compounds these risks. Low birthweight, prematurity, and rapid childhood weight gain should alert clinicians to an individual's lifelong risk of hypertension and kidney disease, prompting education to minimise additional risk factors and ensuring follow-up. Birthweight and prematurity are affected substantially by maternal nutrition and health during pregnancy. Optimisation of maternal health and early childhood nutrition could, therefore, attenuate this programming cycle and reduce the global burden of hypertension and kidney disease in the future.
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    International journal of nephrology. 01/2013; 2013:346067.

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