Low birth weight is associated with chronic kidney disease only in men

Chronic Disease Research Group, Minneapolis Medical Research Foundation, Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA.
Kidney International (Impact Factor: 8.56). 03/2008; 73(5):637-42. DOI: 10.1038/
Source: PubMed


The association of low birth weight and chronic kidney disease was examined in a screened volunteer population by the National Kidney Foundation's Kidney Early Evaluation Program. This is a free, community-based health program enrolling individuals aged 18 years or older with diabetes, hypertension, or a family history of kidney disease, diabetes, or hypertension. Self-reported birth weight was categorized and chronic kidney disease defined as an estimated glomerular filtration rate less than 60 ml per min per 1.73 m(2) or a urine albumin/creatinine ratio >or=30 mg/g. Among 12 364 participants, 15% reported a birth weight less than 2500 g. In men, significant corresponding odds ratios were found after adjustment for demographic characteristics and health conditions to this low birth weight and chronic kidney disease, but there was no association among women. There was no significant interaction between birth weight and race for either gender. Efforts to clinically understand the etiology of this association and potential means of prevention are essential to improving public health.

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Available from: Joseph A Vassalotti, Apr 15, 2014
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    • "More recently the risk of chronic kidney disease (CKD) has been related to low birth weight [32–35]. In a population-based study, the estimated glomerular filtration rate (eGFR) has been shown to increase of 2.6 to 7 mL/min per each kilogram increase in birth weight [33, 36]. In a case control study, Lackland et al. have shown in a population of South Carolina, USA, that the odds ratio for end-stage renal disease (ESDR) was 1.4 (95% confidence interval, 1.1–1.8) in adults with birth weight below 2.5 kg [32]. "
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    ABSTRACT: Cardiovascular diseases are one of the leading causes of mortality. Hypertension (HT) is one of the principal risk factors associated with death. Chronic kidney disease (CKD), which is probably underestimated, increases the risk and the severity of adverse cardiovascular events. It is now recognized that low birth weight is a risk factor for these diseases, and this relationship is amplified by a rapid catch-up growth or overfeeding during infancy or childhood. The pathophysiological and molecular mechanisms involved in the "early programming" of CKD are multiple and partially understood. It has been proposed that the developmental programming of arterial hypertension and chronic kidney disease is related to a reduced nephron endowment. However, this mechanism is still discussed. This review discusses the complex relationship between birth weight and nephron endowment and how early growth and nutrition influence long term HT and CKD. We hypothesize that fetal environment reduces moderately the nephron number which appears insufficient by itself to induce long term diseases. Reduced nephron number constitutes a "factor of vulnerability" when additional factors, in particular a rapid postnatal growth or overfeeding, promote the early onset of diseases through a complex combination of various pathophysiological pathways.
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    • "With prospectively recorded birth weights, there is no possible recall bias between males and females. There is no clear biological explanation for differential effects, but it has been suggested that factors such as higher levels of oestrogen in females and earlier onset of diseases such as diabetes and hypertension in males could be involved [11]. "
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    ABSTRACT: It is suggested that impaired fetal growth can affect kidney development, resulting in fewer glomeruli being formed and reduced kidney function later in life. The aim of this study was to investigate early life variables in relation to adult kidney function, and compare these to the influence of later life variables. Detailed information was collected prospectively regarding 1,142 babies, born in 1947 in Newcastle upon Tyne. At the age of 63-64 years, 335 participants had serum creatinine successfully measured and completed a lifestyle questionnaire. These measurements were used to calculate their estimated glomerular filtration rate (eGFR). Body mass index (BMI) and being female were significantly negatively associated with eGFR. Birth weight was significantly positively associated with eGFR. In sex-specific analyses, BMI and cigarette smoking remained significant for males (n = 154), with a near significant association for birth weight, whereas none of the variables remained significant for females (n = 181). The findings suggest that sex, size at birth and BMI may be important variables influencing adult kidney function. However, as only a small amount of variance in eGFR was explained by these variables, additional longitudinal studies would be beneficial for assessing lifecourse influences on kidney function.
    Full-text · Article · Jun 2013 · PLoS ONE
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    • "It is now recognized as an important determinant of adult health. Acceptance and understanding of this concept derives from human epidemiological studies suggesting that many metabolic diseases such as cardiovascular disease (Barker, 1993), chronic kidney disease (Li et al., 2007), type II diabetes mellitus (Hovi et al., 2007;Hofman et al., 1997), and hypertension (Roseboom et al., 2001) are associated with low birth weight. Since developing organisms pass more physiological benchmarks prior to birth than during as male fetuses become larger than age-matched females (Hindmarsh et al., 2002;Crawford et al., 1987;Parker et al., 1984). "

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