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The polycystic kidney diseases are a group of genetically heterogeneous disorders and a leading cause of kidney failure. The autosomal dominant form of polycystic kidney disease (ADPKD) is the most common life-threatening monogenic disease, affecting 12 million people worldwide. The autosomal recessive form of polycystic kidney disease (ARPKD) is rarer but affects the pediatric population. Kidney cysts are often seen in a wide range of syndromic diseases. Recent studies have shown that defects in the structure or function of the primary cilia may underline this group of genetic diseases collectively termed ciliopathies (Table 309-1).

TABLE 309-1Inherited Diseases Commonly Associated with a Cystic Phenotype


Etiology and Pathogenesis

ADPDK is characterized by progressive formation of epithelial lined cysts in the kidney (Fig. 309-1). Although cysts only occur in 5% of the tubules in the kidney, the enormous growth of these cysts ultimately leads to the loss of normal surrounding tissues and loss of renal function. The cellular defects in ADPKD that have been known for a long time are increased cell proliferation and ...

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