Chronic kidney disease has remained a rather “silent” epidemic. Although dramatic for the affected patients, kidney dysfunction has long been regarded as a “rare” disease but today it is commonly accepted that kidney disease has reached the status of a common disease. Recent special series on kidney disease, in the Lancet and J Clin Invest (2013 and 2014, respectively), point to the fact that the prevalence of chronic kidney disease has now exceeded 10% of the general population, equaling that of diabetes. In addition, the presence of chronic or acute kidney injury significantly worsens the prognosis of other acute and chronic diseases with a particular relevant association to cardiovascular disease (N Engl J Med 2014).
A common deleterious consequence of most of CKDs and AKIs is fibrosis, i.e. the accumulation of extracellular matrix in glomeruli and in the tubulointerstitium that ultimately leads to end stage renal failure.
Therefore our general strategy focuses on the understanding of the mechanism of early fibrogenic stages and on the transformation of this knowledge into therapeutic targets and on the identification of early biomarkers of renal disease.
In this context different research topics are addressed by our team: