, Volume 19, Issue 2, pp 86-91
Date: 31 Jan 2013

Colon may provide new therapeutic targets for treatment of chronic kidney disease with Chinese medicine

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Chronic kidney disease (CKD) has become a worldwide health and social problem. Retarding its progression to end-stage renal disease is beneficial both to the patients and the healthcare system. Plenty of clinical trials have indicated that enema with Chinese medicine could effectively prevent chronic renal failure, and was widely used in the clinical practice. However, studies on mechanism were still nearly blank, which may prevent further improvement of therapeutic efficacy. Recent studies had discovered that colon was an important organ where uremic toxins were generated. The uremic toxins involved could not only promote CKD progression, but also was closely correlated with CKD mortality. Reducing production and promoting excretion of toxins were confirmed to reduce renal tubule interstitial fibrosis and delay renal progression. On the basis of the theory of gut-kidney axis above, we had conducted pilot clinical researches to evaluate the effect of enema with Chinese medicine on the intestinal flora, gut barrier, enterogenous uremic toxins and renal protection. The preliminary results revealed that rheum enema through colon could accelerate intestinal dynamics, improve intestinal barrier function, regulate intestinal flora and reduce production and absorption of intestine-derived uremic toxins such as indoxyl sulfate, which may reduce renal fibrosis and delay renal progression. Further studies could provide more evidence for colon as a new therapeutic target for the treatment of CKD with Chinese medicine.