Higher FGF23 concentrations have been consistently associated with increased risk of mortality at all stages of CKD, independent of traditional renal and cardiovascular risk factors.[91-94] In animal studies FGF23 excess as a result of direct intracardiac administration of a mutant FGF23 (and where klotho is absent) has been shown to lead to left ventricular hypertrophy and provides a plausible mechanism of direct cardiac injury at the high concentrations observed in advanced disease. The significance that these experiments were carried out with mutant FGF23 resistant to furin PXD101 in vitro protease digestion is not known. However, supporting independent links between FGF23
and cardiovascular outcomes and mortality is the integrity of such associations after adjusting for phosphate, PTH and vitamin D levels.[91-94] It has yet to be established whether specifically lowering FGF23 or antagonizing its action would yield clinical benefit. Indeed, antagonizing FGF23 with a specific antibody increased vascular calcification and mortality in animals with renal impairment. The downregulation of klotho expression in tissues where it is expressed has been linked to enhancement of the klotho-independent effects of FGF23 in other tissues. One explanation is that with less
binding to the klotho–FGFR Talazoparib complex, more FGF23 is left in the circulation to bind ‘off-target’ to other FGFR, where specificity to the receptor is low, yet ligand present in excess so causing activation of other low specificity FGFR at non-physiological sites. A consistent finding in CKD is the overall decrease in mKl expression in the kidney, parathyroid glands and vasculature. Although human studies Selleck Neratinib of mKl have been
limited due to difficulty in obtaining tissue to determine expression, there appears to be good evidence of reduced kidney mKl expression in animal CKD models.[31, 98] A low level of sKl in plasma and urine of mice with CKD has also been reported. Human studies reporting on associations between circulating sKl and renal function have been capricious even using the same assay (Table 1). Seiler et al. reported no correlation between sKl levels and renal function while other investigators report an increase in sKl with declining GFR.[49, 50, 55] More than half of the human studies in patients with CKD however have documented a reduction in sKl levels with reduced GFR.[39-41, 52-54] The aforementioned issues with assay performance may underpin the apparent discordant results, but may also relate to differences in study setting or simply reflect intricacies of klotho metabolism, which as yet we do not understand. Nonetheless, reductions seen in mKl suggest a relative deficiency of klotho in CKD.