Type 1 diabetes (T1D) has wide-reaching effects on the body, impacting various organs and systems—including your kidneys. Normally, the kidneys filter waste and extra water out of your blood to make urine. Your kidneys also help control blood pressure and make hormones that your body needs to stay healthy. But, when your kidneys are damaged, they can’t filter blood like they should, which can cause wastes to build up in your body.
Download our Diabetic Kidney Disease one-pager.
Nearly one out of three people with T1D develop kidney disease. In fact, almost half of kidney failure cases are caused by diabetes. With kidney failure, your kidneys are operating at less than 15 percent capacity. Currently, there is no therapy approved for people with T1D who also have kidney disease.
But, kidney damage caused by diabetes usually occurs slowly, over many years. So, what can YOU do now to keep your kidneys healthy?
- Get your kidneys checked by a health care professional, who uses blood and urine tests to check for diabetic kidney disease, once a year
- Protect your kidneys by keeping your blood sugar and blood pressure under control
- Medicines that lower the blood pressure—typically ending in -pril or -sartan, for example, lisinopril or losartan—have been shown to slow kidney damage in people with T1D who have high blood pressure and diabetic kidney disease
JDRF has funded kidney disease research since we were established 50 years ago. Here are some of our recent advances:
- In 2019, a JDRF-funded team found 17 proteins in the blood that were robustly associated with progression to end-stage kidney disease—a true breakthrough in predicting who with T1D may develop end-stage disease. Further testing these proteins may offer hope that people living with T1D may thwart the potentially life-threatening complication altogether.
- JDRF is partnering with the Biomarker Enterprise to Attack Diabetic Kidney Disease (BEAt-DKD), an international public-private alliance, aiming to identify biomarkers—which would help quicken clinical trials—for diabetic kidney disease.
- JDRF, with our affiliate JDRF Australia, is funding a phase II trial to test a first-in-class Nox-1/4 inhibitor in adults with T1D. If the results mirror the preclinical studies, it will represent a major breakthrough for the management of kidney disease in people with the disease.
Learn more about how JDRF’s research is helping people live without the complications of this disease.