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1.  Role of the Intrarenal Renin-Angiotensin-Aldosterone System in Chronic Kidney Disease 
American Journal of Nephrology  2010;31(6):541-550.
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.
doi:10.1159/000313363
PMCID: PMC3202956  PMID: 20484892
Angiotensin; Direct renin inhibition; Aliskiren; Kidney disease
2.  Prevention and Treatment of Acute Kidney Injury in Patients Undergoing Cardiac Surgery: A Systematic Review 
American Journal of Nephrology  2010;31(5):408-418.
Background
Acute kidney injury (AKI) is common in patients undergoing cardiac surgery and is associated with a high rate of death, long-term sequelae and healthcare costs. We conducted a systematic review of randomized controlled trials for strategies to prevent or treat AKI in cardiac surgery.
Methods
We screened Medline, Scopus, Cochrane Renal Library, and Google Scholar for randomized controlled trails in cardiac surgery for prevention or treatment of AKI in adults.
Results
We identified 70 studies that contained a total of 5,554 participants published until November 2008. Most studies were small in sample size, were single-center, focused on preventive strategies, and displayed wide variation in AKI definitions. Only 26% were assessed to be of high quality according to the Jadad criteria. The types of strategies with possible protective efficacy were dopaminergic agents, vasodilators, anti-inflammatory agents, and pump/perfusion strategies. When analyzed separately, dopamine and N-acetylcysteine did not reduce the risk for AKI.
Conclusions
This summary of all the literature on prevention and treatment strategies for AKI in cardiac surgery highlights the need for better information. The results advocate large, good-quality, multicenter studies to determine whether promising interventions reliably reduce rates of acute renal replacement therapy and mortality in the cardiac surgery setting.
doi:10.1159/000296277
PMCID: PMC2883845  PMID: 20375494
Acute kidney injury, prevention; Cardiac surgery; Healthcare costs

Results 1-2 (2)