Kidney Disease

Medical Research Scotland is one of the largest and most comprehensive independent research charities in Scotland. Unlike most medical research charities, our funding isn't restricted to any one disease or condition, we support high-quality research that aims to improve the understanding, diagnosis, treatment and prevention of all diseases and disease mechanisms.

Awards in the past 20 years

The following are some of the awards we made for research into kidney disease.

£56,016 over 12 months to Dr David A. Ferenbach and Drs Jeremy Hughes & David Kluth (Centre for Inflammation Research, University of Edinburgh), for an investigation of the role of resident renal macrophages and apoptotic cells in preventing acute kidney injury.
When any organ suffers a period without adequate blood supply (ischaemia), whether or not a blood supply is later restored to it, the tissues are damaged. In the kidney, this type of injury is a key cause of acute renal failure and is frequently fatal. The aim of this project is to investigate whether the kidney can be protected from this type of injury by making use of some of the cells involved in the body's normal defence and repair mechanisms, but which are not normally present in the kidney.

£39,777 over 18 months to Dr James W. Dear (Clinical Pharmacology Unit, University of Edinburgh) and colleagues Professor David Webb (Centre for Cardiovascular Science), Professor D. Nicholas Batemen (Scottish Poisons Information Bureau, Edinburgh Royal Infirmary), Dr Ian Marshall (Medical Physics Department, University of Edinburgh) & Dr Kenneth J. Simpson (Centre for Inflammation Research, University of Edinburgh) for the characterisation of paracetamol-induced acute renal failure, using dendrimer-contrast magnetic resonance imaging.
Improved treatment for the 50% of patients suffering from a paracetamol overdose who go on to develop potentially fatal kidney damage is the eventual aim of this study. Using MRI scanning technologies, it will test a new technique for imaging the pattern of organ injury, studying possible new treatments and also the role of the immune system in determining organ injury.

The Mrs Robina Menzies Smith Medical Research Scholarship 2004-05 was awarded to Dr Ewen Munro Harrison (Tissue Injury & Repair Group, Centre for Inflammation Research, Edinburgh University) to investigate pharmacological intervention to reduce ischaemia/reperfusion injury in the kidney.

£69,924 over two years to Dr Renate Kain (Pathology, Aberdeen University) for the identification of gp130 - a novel target of autoimmune attack in glomerulonephritis.
In focal necrotising glomerulonephritis the healthy cells of the kidney are attacked by antibodies made by the body's immune system. These antibodies have been shown to recognise a molecule called gp130, found in the kidney small blood vessels. The aim therefore of the research is to study gp130 and formulate a test for it.

£69,903 over two years to Drs Lindsay S. Cairns, Robert N. Barker & Andrew J. Rees (Medicine & Therapeutics, Aberdeen University) to investigate the differential responses of human T helper cells to Type IV collagen chains as a possible basis for novel therapies.
The basement membrane of the kidney's filtration unit is attacked by the body's immune system in a group of disorders known as glomerulonephritis. Different membrane component molecules however, respond differently to this attack so this research intends to establish why these responses differ, so the researchers can more fully understand the disease process.

Dr Scott M. Nelson (Queen Mother's Hospital, Glasgow) to identify prognostic indicators of pulmonary hypoplasia in fetal congenital diaphragmatic hernia and obstructive uropathy.

£69,061 over two years to Dr David Kluth (Medicine & Therapeutics, Aberdeen University) to investigate the possibilities for macrohage-mediated gene therapy in glomerulonephritis.

£50,818 to Drs Christopher Deighan & J.M. Boulton-Jones (Renal Unit) and Professor Christopher Packard and Dr M. Caslake (Pathological Biochemistry, Glasgow Royal Infirmary) for a one-year study of anbnormalities of lipoprotein metabolism in proteinuria and its role in cardiovascular risk and the progression of chronic renal failure.