Food restriction ameliorates the development of polycystic kidney disease

Gina Warner, Kyaw Zaw Hein, Veronica Nin, Marika Edwards, Claudia C.S. Chini, Katharina Hopp, Peter C. Harris, Vicente E. Torres, Eduardo N. Chini

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

64 Scopus citations


Autosomal dominant polycystic kidney disease (ADPKD) is a genetic disorder characterized by the accumulation of kidney cysts that ultimately leads to loss of renal function and kidney failure. At present, the treatment for ADPKD is largely supportive. Multiple studies have focused on pharmacologic approaches to slow the development of the cystic disease; however, little is known about the role of nutrition and dietary manipulation in PKD. Here, we show that food restriction (FR) effectively slows the course of the disease in mouse models of ADPKD. Mild to moderate (10%-40%) FR reduced cyst area, renal fibrosis, inflammation, and injury in a dose-dependent manner.Molecular and biochemical studies in these mice indicate that FR ameliorates ADPKD through a mechanism involving suppression of the mammalian target of the rapamycin pathway and activation of the liver kinase B1/AMP-activated protein kinase pathway. Our data suggest that dietary interventions such as FR, or treatment that mimics the effects of such interventions, may be potential and novel preventive and therapeutic options for patients with ADPKD.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1437-1447
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of the American Society of Nephrology
Issue number5
StatePublished - May 2016

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Nephrology


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