Diabetic nephropathy is the leading cause of end-stage renal disease in the United States. Renin-angiotensin-aldosterone system (RAAS) blockers are thought to have a specific renoprotective effect in diabetes. Hirst et al. report the results of randomized clinical trials assessing the effects of RAAS inhibitors on urinary albumin excretion levels in diabetic patients. Although reductions in urinary albumin excretion were observed, whether RAAS inhibitors offer additional protection over other antihypertensive agents is unclear.
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I am supported by a Career Development Award from the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation and also receive research support from the Pennock Professorship in Diabetes Research at the University of Minnesota. I thank Michael Mauer for his thoughtful insights.