Acquired decline in ultrafiltration in peritoneal dialysis: The role of glucose

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Ultrafiltration is essential in peritoneal dialysis (PD) for maintenance of euvolemia, making ultrafiltration insufficiency—preferably called ultrafiltration failure—an important complication. The mechanisms of ultrafiltration and ultrafiltration failure are more complex than generally assumed, especially after long-term treatment. Initially, ultrafiltration failure is mainly explained by a large number of perfused peritoneal microvessels, leading to a rapid decline of the crystalloid osmotic gradient, thereby decreasing aquaporin-mediated free water transport. The contribution of peritoneal interstitial tissue to ultrafiltration failure is limited during the first few years of PD, but becomes more important in long-term PD due to the development of interstitial fibrosis, which mainly consists of myofibroblasts. A dual hypothesis has been developed to explain why the continuous exposure of peritoneal tissues to the extremely high dialysate glucose concentrations causes progressive ultrafiltration decline. First, glucose absorption causes an increase of the intracellular NADH/ NAD1 ratio, also called pseudohypoxia. Intracellular hypoxia stimulates myofibroblasts to produce profibrotic and angiogenetic factors, and the glucose transporter GLUT-1. Second, the increased GLUT-1 expression by myofibroblasts increases glucose uptake in these cells, leading to a reduction of the osmotic gradient for ultrafiltration. Reduction of peritoneal glucose exposure to prevent this vicious circle is essential for high-quality, long-term PD.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2408-2415
Number of pages8
JournalClinical journal of the American Society of Nephrology
Issue number10
Publication statusPublished - 1 Oct 2021
Externally publishedYes

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