Healthy and unhealthy aging on kidney structure and function: human studies

Aleksandar Denic, Andrew D. Rule, Richard J. Glassock

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


Purpose of reviewThis review is intended to provide an up-to-date analysis of the structural and functional alterations of the kidneys that accompany healthy and unhealthy aging in humans. Macro- and micro- structural changes and glomerular filtration rate (whole kidney and single nephron) accompanying aging will be stressed.Recent findingsComparative findings concerning distribution of anatomic changes of the kidney healthy and unhealthy aging are reviewed. Challenges concerning definition of chronic kidney disease (CKD) in otherwise healthy aging patients are discussed. The complex interactions of CKD and aging are discussed. The role of podocyte dysbiosis in kidney aging is reviewed.SummaryKidney aging is a complex phenomenon often difficult to distinguish from CKD. Nonetheless, phenotypes of healthy and unhealthy aging are evident. Much more information concerning the molecular characteristics of normal kidney aging and its relevance to chronic kidney disease is needed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)228-234
Number of pages7
JournalCurrent opinion in nephrology and hypertension
Issue number3
StatePublished - May 1 2022


  • aging
  • chronic kidney disease
  • glomerular filtration rate
  • kidney anatomy
  • kidney function

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Internal Medicine
  • Nephrology


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