PhD conferral mrs. Lu Dai
Supervisors: prof.dr. L. Schurgers, prof. P. Stenvinkel, Stockholm, prof.dr. R. Kramann, RWTH
Key words: vascular calcification, coronary artery calcium, aortic valve calcium, media calcification, gut microbiota, vitamin K status, chronic kidney disease
"Chronic kidney disease - a clinical model of premature vascular aging"
Patients with chronic kidney disease (CKD) are characterized by an accelerated aging process, including multiple cardiovascular complications, muscle wasting, osteoporosis and frailty. In particular, the arterial vasculature in CKD patients undergoes changes typical of aging and atypical of their chronological age. This premature vascular aging is often accompanied by progressive vascular calcification (VC), and is considered as a major culprit of unfavourable cardiovascular complications and premature death in CKD. Numerous risk factors and pharmacological treatment adds to the complexity of the course and consequences of VC in the context of CKD. More profound knowledge of the clinical relevance and prognostic value of VC remains to be clarified in this enigmatic scenario as to develop and orientate efficient preventive and therapeutic strategies to counteract VC. This work attempts to explore the prognostic value, predictive markers as well as collateral therapeutic consequence of VC in CKD.