Spotting the Earliest Signs of Type 1 Diabetic Kidney Disease

JDRF network grant to fund study to find new types of diagnostic markers —

In an effort to pinpoint the earliest signs of diabetic kidney disease, researchers at University of California, San Diego School of Medicine are leading a multi-institutional international effort dedicated to finding a new breed of disease indicators.

The study, funded by a $2.5 million JDRF (formerly known as the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation) grant, will tap the potential of three emerging “omics” sciences to discover new ways to determine which patients are most likely to develop diabetic kidney disease. Samples from more than 2,000 type 1 diabetes patients, collected over a period of years by several medical centers around the world, will be used in the analyses. …Read the full story from the UC San Diego Newsroom


Kumar Sharma, MD, FAHAPrincipal investigator of the study is Kumar Sharma, MD, FAHA, Professor of Medicine in the Division of Nephrology. He directs the Center for Renal Translational Medicine and the Institute of Metabolomic Medicine in UC San Diego School of Medicine.

Plasmapheresis for Medical Disorders: Dr. Amber Paratore Sanchez Speaking at This Week’s Grand Rounds

Dr. Amber SanchezDr. Amber Sanchez will speak on plasmapheresis for medical disorders at the October 22 session of Medicine Grand Rounds.

A former UC San Diego chief medical resident (2006-2007) who is now on the internal medicine faculty, Amber Paratore Sanchez, MD, is Health Sciences assistant clinical professor in the Division of Nephrology-Hypertension.

She is associate medical director of the Therapeutic Apheresis Program at UC San Diego Health System.

See her clinical profile

Dianne McKay Receives CIRM Basic Biology Grant

Eight stem cell scientists at the University of California, San Diego have been awarded a total of $8.165 million to fund research tackling significant, unresolved issues in human stem cell biology. … Read the full story from the UC San Diego News Center


Dianne McKay, MDDianne B. McKay, MD, professor of clinical medicine in the Division of Nephrology-Hypertension, is one of the eight UC San Diego researchers to receive a Basic Biology V Award from the California Institute for Regenerative Medicine this week.

McKay is medical director of the Kidney Transplant Program at UC San Diego Health System.

Enzyme Restores Function with Diabetic Kidney Disease

Mouse findings reverse prevailing theory; point to potential treatment options

Researchers at the University of California, San Diego School of Medicine say that, while a prevailing theory suggests elevated cellular levels of glucose ultimately result in diabetic kidney disease, the truth may, in fact, be quite the opposite. The findings could fundamentally change understanding of how diabetes-related diseases develop – and how they might be better treated. … Read the full story from the UC San Diego News Center


Kumar Sharma, MD, FAHA Kumar Sharma, MD, FAHA, senior author of the study report, is professor of medicine and director of the Center for Renal Translational Medicine in the Division of Nephrology-Hypertension.

Dr. Laura DuganFirst author Laura L. Dugan, MD, at right, is professor of neurosciences and professor and chief of the Division of Geriatrics in the Department of Medicine. She holds the Larry L. Hillblom Chair in Geriatric Medicine.

Second author Young-Hyun You is an associate project scientist in the Division of Nephrology-Hypertension,

Other DOM faculty coauthors are Sameh S. Ali, assistant professor of medicine in the Division of Geriatrics, and Robert K. Naviaux, MD, PhD, professor of medicine in the Division of Medical Genetics.

Citation for the study report:

Laura L. Dugan, Young-Hyun You, Sameh S. Ali, Maggie Diamond-Stanic, Satoshi Miyamoto, Anne-Emilie DeCleves, Aleksander Andreyev, Tammy Quach, San Ly, Grigory Shekhtman, William Nguyen, Andre Chepetan, Thuy P. Le, Lin Wang, Ming Xu, Kacie P. Paik, Agnes Fogo, Benoit Viollet, Anne Murphy, Frank Brosius, Robert K. Naviaux and Kumar Sharma. AMPK dysregulation promotes diabetes-related reduction of superoxide and mitochondrial function. J Clin Invest. 2013;123(11):4888–4899. doi:10.1172/JCI66218.  |  Full text (UCSD only)

Related UC San Diego news stories:

Urine Biomarkers Reveal Mitochondrial Dysfunction in Diabetic Kidney Disease

Researchers at the University of California, San Diego School of Medicine have identified 13 metabolites – small molecules produced by cellular metabolism – that are significantly different in patients with diabetes and chronic kidney disease compared to healthy controls. … Read the full story from the UC San Diego News Center


Kumar Sharma, MD, FAHA First author Kumar Sharma, MD, FAHA, is professor of medicine and director of the Center for Renal Translational Medicine in the Division of Nephrology-Hypertension.

Citation for the study report:

Metabolomics Reveals Signature of Mitochondrial Dysfunction in Diabetic Kidney Disease. Kumar Sharma, Bethany Karl, Anna V. Mathew, Jon A. Gangoiti, Christina L. Wassel, Rintaro Saito, Minya Pu, Shoba Sharma, Young-Hyun You, Lin Wang, Maggie Diamond-Stanic, Maja T. Lindenmeyer, Carol Forsblom, Wei Wu, Joachim H. Ix, Trey Ideker, Jeffrey B. Kopp, Sanjay K. Nigam, Clemens D. Cohen, Per-Henrik Groop, Bruce A. Barshop, Loki Natarajan, William L. Nyhan, and Robert K. Naviaux JASN ASN.2013020126; published ahead of print October 10, 2013, doi:10.1681/ASN.2013020126  |  Full text (UCSD only)

Related UC San Diego news stories:

$5.6 Million Grant Renewal Expands Research in Kidney Failure

The National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDKD) – part of the National Institutes of Health – has renewed a grant shared by the University of California, San Diego and the University of Alabama at Birmingham Schools of Medicine. The five-year, $5.64 million renewal will extend and expand research into acute kidney failure, or acute kidney injury, which kills 70 to 80 percent of patients in intensive care units who develop the disease.Read the full story from the UCSD Newsroom


Dr. Ravindra MehtaRavindra L. Mehta, MD, FACP, UC San Diego professor of clinical medicine and vice chair for clinical research in the Department of Medicine, is associate director of the UC San Diego – University of Alabama at Birmingham O’Brien Center for Acute Kidney Injury Research.

He directs the O’Brien Center’s clinical studies core with co-director Daniel O’Connor, MD. O’Connor is professor of medicine and pharmacology and co-director, UCSD Center for Human Genetics and Genomics.

UC San Diego nephrology faculty members Roland Blantz, MD, and Volker Vallon, MD, are co-directors of the pre-clinical studies core of the O’Brien Center. Blantz is distinguished professor of medicine emeritus and former chief of the Division of Nephrology-Hypertension; Vallon is professor of medicine and pharmacology.

UC San Diego nephrologist Satish RamachandraRao, PhD, assistant professor of medicine, is a co-director of the Bioanalytical Resource Core.

Ravindra L. Mehta is Director of Dialysis Programs and Clinical Nephrology for UC San Diego Health System. In the UC San Diego School of Medicine, Mehta directs the Clinical Research Enhancement through Supplemental Training (CREST) and Master’s Degree in Clinical Research programs.

In 2011, Mehta received the International Society of Nephrology (ISN) Shire Bywaters Award for his lifetime achievements in acute kidney injury.

More Information:

High Rankings for Internal Medicine Specialties in 2013-2014 “America’s Best Hospitals” Report

Internal medicine subspecialties received high rankings and played a large part in UC San Diego Health System’s excellent showing in the U.S. News & World Report “America’s Best Hospitals 2013-2014” guide released July 16.

Clinical efforts of Department of Medicine divisions are either partly or completely responsible for 7 of the 10 UC San Diego Health System adult specialties that ranked in the nation’s top 50 this year and 1 of the 4 ranked as high performing:

In addition, Rheumatology is ranked as high performing once again (Division of Rheumatology, Allergy & Immunology).

Last year, three Department of Medicine specialties ranked in the nation’s top 50 and five were rated high performing.

Wolfgang H. Dillmann, MD“We can be very proud of achieving such a significant rise in our specialty rankings in one year,” said Wolfgang H. Dillmann, MD, Helen M. Ranney Distinguished Professor and Chair of the Department of Medicine.

In an announcement to the Department of Medicine faculty, he said, “Thank you for your hard work and your dedication in your patient care activities.

“Your efforts play a major part in distinguishing UC San Diego Health System as one of the finest hospitals in the country, and the top hospital in the San Diego metropolitan area.”

Details of the rankings for UC San Diego Health System are published online here. |  More about the methodology

$5.9 Million Grant to UC San Diego for Paradigm-Shifting Diabetes Research

Kumar Sharma, MD, FAHA, professor of medicine at the University of California, San Diego School of Medicine and director of the Center for Renal Translational Medicine, has received a $5.9 million grant from the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK), part of the National Institutes of Health, to study kidney complications related to type 1 and type 2 diabetes…. Read the full story from the UCSD Newsroom


Kumar Sharma, MD, FAHADr. Sharma’s project, “Novel Paradigms in Diabetic Complications,” is a five-year Type 1 Diabetes Targeted Research Award.

Read the project abstract

Other Department of Medicine investigators in the project:

UCSD Nephrology Teaming with University of Alabama in O’Brien Center Grant

The Division of Nephrology in UC San Diego’s Department of Medicine has become part of a prestigious national kidney research network with the award of a five-year, $4.23 million O’Brien Research Center grant to the University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB).

The project, which will bring about $400,000 annually to UCSD, will focus on finding new ways to prevent and to treat kidney failure.

Read the full story
from Health Sciences Communications

UCSD nephrologists, headed by Ravindra L. Mehta, M.D., F.A.C.P., will operate one of the core research efforts in the UAB/UCSD O’Brien Center.

Dr. Mehta, professor of clinical medicine in the Division of Nephrology, is Associate Chair for Clinical Affairs in the Department of Medicine.

Two other UCSD Nephrology researchers will contribute their research expertise in genetics and molecular markers of kidney injury:

The O’Brien Center funding comes from the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases. There are only eight O’Brien kidney research centers in the United States.

More Information:

High Rankings for Four UC San Diego Internal Medicine Subspecialties in 2008 “Best Hospitals” Report

Four UC San Diego Department of Medicine subspecialties are among the top in the nation in the 2008 “Best Hospitals” list from U.S. News & World Report:

The report was released July 10.

Read the full story from
UC San Diego Health Sciences Communications

More Information