Chapter 4

Animal Models of Kidney Disease-Associated Anemia

Patrícia Garrido, Elísio Costa, Alice Santos-Silva and Flávio Reis


Erythropoietin (EPO) is a peptide hormone that stimulates erythropoiesis. The lack of EPO synthesis is the main cause of anemia associated with chronic disease. Treatment with recombinant human erythropoietin (rhEPO) has proved most useful to increase the quality of life in anemic patients. Furthermore, rhEPO has been associated with cytoprotective effects beyond the erythropoietic action on non-renal tissues. However, several questions deserve better elucidation, which cannot be achieved only with human studies, including the mechanisms underlying resistance to rhEPO therapy, the deleterious effects at high rhEPO doses, as well as the nature of the renoprotective properties. Animal models of kidney diseases/anemia are important tools to study pathophysiological events in kidney diseases that potentially could be translated into improved management of patients with these pathologies. In this chapter some of the main animal models used for studying the effects of rhEPO on kidney disease/anemia will be reviewed.

Total Pages: 61-80 (20)

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