UCI Health receives NIH grant to study kidney disease, track treatment methods

June 16, 2014

UCI Health will use a $3.4-million grant from the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases of the National Institutes of Health to examine the “Transition of Care in Chronic Kidney Disease (CKD).”

The award is one of three United States Renal Data System five-year contracts bestowed by the NIH upon academic centers to examine chronic kidney disease and its risk factors and consequences, including treatment modalities and outcomes of patients with CKD. The UC Irvine School of Medicine's Division of Nephrology & Hypertension won a national competition to bring this prestigious grant to the University of California, Irvine campus.

“Our studies over the next half a decade will examine the nature and outcomes of the transition to dialysis treatment or kidney transplantation that happens in more than 100,000 Americans with advanced chronic kidney disease each year,” said Dr. Kamyar Kalantar-Zadeh, the grant's principal investigator and chief of the nephrology division.

The award establishes the UC Irvine Medical Center in Orange, Calif., as a United States Renal Data System Special study center for five years. The data system is a national clearinghouse for information about chronic and end-stage kidney disease and treatment modalities for these patients. It collaborates with the federal Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, the United Network for Organ Sharing and 18 ESRD networks across the nation.

The project will be conducted at the UC Irvine Medical Center and the Veterans Affairs Medical Center in Long Beach, Calif. The study population will consist of veterans treated at VA medical centers across the nation and members of Kaiser Permanente Southern California who are transitioning to renal replacement therapy.

“These awards highlight the exceptional level of expertise and important contributions of the UC Irvine Nephrology & Hypertension o study the increasing epidemic of chronic kidney disease throughout the world,” Kalantar said.

The grant also permits UC Irvine to provide collaborative awards to Dr. Csaba P. Kovesdy at the University of Tennessee Health Science Center in Memphis and Dr. Steven J. Jacobsen of the Kaiser Permanente Southern California Department of Research & Evaluation.

An estimated 13 percent of Americans have chronic kidney disease, which increases their risk for early death due mainly to cardiovascular disease. Every year in the U.S., 100,000 people develop end-stage kidney disease that requires dialysis or kidney transplantation for survival.

This research is supported by the NIH’s National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive & Kidney Diseases under award number U01DK102163.

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Media contact:
John Murray, UCI Health