Pediatric Nephrology

, Volume 27, Issue 8, pp 1317–1323 | Cite as

Race-specific relationship of birth weight and renal function among healthy young children

  • Andrea E. Cassidy-BushrowEmail author
  • Ganesa Wegienka
  • Charles J. BaroneII
  • Rudolph P. Valentini
  • Jerry Yee
  • Suzanne Havstad
  • Christine Cole Johnson
Original Article



Low birth weight is associated with diminished renal function. However, despite African Americans being at increased risk of low birth weight and chronic kidney disease, little is known about the association between birth weight and renal function in diverse groups. We examined racial differences in the relationship of birth weight and renal function among healthy young children.


Birth weight and serum creatinine data were available on 152 children (61.8% African American; 47.4% female) from a birth cohort. Estimated glomerular filtration rate (eGFR) was calculated using the bedside Schwartz equation and gender- and gestational-age-adjusted birth weight Z-scores using the US population as a reference. Race-specific linear regression models were fit to estimate the association between birth weight Z-score and eGFR.


Mean age was 1.5 ± 1.3 years at first eGFR measurement. African Americans had lower eGFR than non-African Americans (median eGFR = 82 vs. 95 ml/min per 1.73 m2; p = 0.06). Birth weight was significantly and positively associated with eGFR among African American (p = 0.012) but not non-African American children (p = 0.33).


We provide, for the first time, evidence suggesting that birth weight is associated with renal function in African American children. Future work is needed to determine if prenatal programming helps explain racial disparities in adult health.


Prenatal programming Race Disparity Birth weight Renal function 



This study was supported by the National Institutes of Health (R01 AI050681) and the Fund for Henry Ford Hospital.


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Copyright information

© IPNA 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  • Andrea E. Cassidy-Bushrow
    • 1
    Email author
  • Ganesa Wegienka
    • 1
  • Charles J. BaroneII
    • 2
  • Rudolph P. Valentini
    • 3
  • Jerry Yee
    • 4
  • Suzanne Havstad
    • 1
  • Christine Cole Johnson
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Public Health SciencesHenry Ford HospitalDetroitUSA
  2. 2.Department of PediatricsHenry Ford HospitalDetroitUSA
  3. 3.The Carman and Ann Adams Department of Pediatrics, Division of Nephrology and HypertensionChildren’s Hospital of Michigan, Wayne State University School of MedicineDetroitUSA
  4. 4.Division of Nephrology and Hypertension, Department of MedicineHenry Ford HospitalDetroitUSA

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