Unknown Causes of Kidney Disease Summit

On Tuesday, December 1, 2020, the American Kidney Fund (AKF) will host the Unknown Causes of Kidney Disease Summit. The initiative is designed to enhance understanding of the ways undiagnosed or misdiagnosed causes of kidney disease have direct impacts on patient care and outcomes. The summit will include medical leaders and patient advocates, as well as academic and industry researchers who will review current research on efforts in the kidney community to drive innovation in research, diagnosis, and treatment of the underlying causes of kidney disease.

Sponsors of the summit include Natera, Otsuka America Pharmaceutical, Inc., Sanofi Genzyme, Vertex Pharmaceuticals Incorporated, Alexion Pharmaceuticals, and Travere Therapeutics, Inc.

Diabetes and hypertension are the two main causes of kidney disease; however, other conditions can affect the kidneys and result in serious health implications. In some patients, kidney failure results from genetic disease, putting family members of undiagnosed patients at risk. Delayed diagnoses or misdiagnoses may result in delayed treatment, development of additional comorbidities, and the loss of a transplanted kidney.

LaVarne A. Burton, president and CEO of AKF,  said, “Too many people crash into late-stage disease or complete kidney failure without ever knowing the cause. In some cases, these patients may receive a kidney transplant but later lose the transplant because of an underlying condition that is attacking the kidneys—this is nothing short of tragic. In other cases of misdiagnosis, multiple family members experience kidney failure before realizing there is a genetic cause. We’re grateful to the researchers, organizations, and patients committing to work with us on this life-saving, unprecedented initiative.”

Ali Gharavi, MD, summit steering committee member, said, “Kidney disease of unknown etiology is a very common condition, presenting a frustrating challenge for patients and clinicians. This initiative is an exceptional endeavor, bringing together leading experts and advocates to chart a path forward that addresses critical science and clinical questions.”

For more information, visit kidneyfund.org/summit