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Current Pharmacogenomics and Personalized Medicine


ISSN (Print): 1875-6921
ISSN (Online): 1875-6913

Top Three Pharmacogenomics and Personalized Medicine Applications at the Nexus of Renal Pathophysiology and Cardiovascular Medicine

Author(s): Murielle Bochud, Michel Burnier and Idris Guessous

Volume 9, Issue 4, 2011

Page: [299 - 322] Pages: 24

DOI: 10.2174/187569211798377135


Pharmacogenomics is a field with origins in the study of monogenic variations in drug metabolism in the 1950s. Perhaps because of these historical underpinnings, there has been an intensive investigation of ‘hepatic pharmacogenes’ such as CYP450s and liver drug metabolism using pharmacogenomics approaches over the past five decades. Surprisingly, kidney pathophysiology, attendant diseases and treatment outcomes have been vastly under-studied and under-theorized despite their central importance in maintenance of health, susceptibility to disease and rational personalized therapeutics. Indeed, chronic kidney disease (CKD) represents an increasing public health burden worldwide, both in developed and developing countries. Patients with CKD suffer from high cardiovascular morbidity and mortality, which is mainly attributable to cardiovascular events before reaching end-stage renal disease. In this paper, we focus our analyses on renal function before end-stage renal disease, as seen through the lens of pharmacogenomics and human genomic variation. We herein synthesize the recent evidence linking selected Very Important Pharmacogenes (VIP) to renal function, blood pressure and salt-sensitivity in humans, and ways in which these insights might inform rational personalized therapeutics. Notably, we highlight and present the rationale for three applications that we consider as important and actionable therapeutic and preventive focus areas in renal pharmacogenomics: 1) ACE inhibitors, as a confirmed application, 2) VDR agonists, as a promising application, and 3) moderate dietary salt intake, as a suggested novel application. Additionally, we emphasize the putative contributions of gene-environment interactions, discuss the implications of these findings to treat and prevent hypertension and CKD. Finally, we conclude with a strategic agenda and vision required to accelerate advances in this under-studied field of renal pharmacogenomics with vast significance for global public health.

Keywords: ACE inhibitors, blood pressure, chronic kidney disease, pharmacogenomics genes, renal function, salt intake, VDR agonists

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