: This review examines the impact of childhood obesity on the kidney from an epidemiological, pathogenetic, clinical, and pathological perspective, with the aim of providing pediatricians and nephrologists with the most current data on this topic. The prevalence of childhood obesity and chronic kidney disease (CKD) is steadily increasing worldwide, reaching epidemic proportions. While the impact of obesity in children with CKD is less pronounced than in adults, recent studies suggest a similar trend in the child population. This is likely due to the significant association between obesity and the two leading causes of end-stage renal disease (ESRD): diabetes mellitus (DM) and hypertension. Obesity is a complex, systemic disease that reflects interactions between environmental and genetic factors. A key mechanism of kidney damage is related to metabolic syndrome and insulin resistance. Therefore, we can speculate about an adipose tissue-kidney axis in which neurohormonal and immunological mechanisms exacerbate complications resulting from obesity. Adipose tissue, now recognized as an endocrine organ, secretes cytokines called adipokines that may induce adaptive or maladaptive responses in renal cells, leading to kidney fibrosis. The impact of obesity on kidney transplant-related outcomes for both donors and recipients is also significant, making stringent preventive measures critical in the pre- and post-transplant phases. The challenge lies in identifying renal involvement as early as possible, as it is often completely asymptomatic and not detectable through common markers of kidney function. Ongoing research into innovative technologies, such as proteomics and metabolomics, aims to identify new biomarkers and is constantly evolving. Many aspects of pediatric disease progression in the population of children with obesity still require clarification. However, the latest scientific evidence in the field of nephrology offers glimpses into various new perspectives, such as genetic factors, comorbidities, and novel biomarkers. Investigating these aspects early could potentially improve the prognosis of these young patients through new diagnostic and therapeutic strategies. Hence, the aim of this review is to provide a comprehensive exploration of the pathogenetic mechanisms and prevalent pathological patterns of kidney damage observed in children with obesity.
Carullo, Nazareno;Zicarelli, Mariateresa;Michael, Ashour;Perticone, Maria;Costa, Davide;Coppolino, Giuseppe;Bolignano, Davide;Serra, Raffaele
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