Join us for this free evening event to hear this year's Jephcott lecture, given by leading nephrologist and former Physician to HM The Queen and Head of the Medical Household, Professor Sir John Cunningham. He will discuss Crosstalk between the kidney and the heart - a dangerous conversation.
We hope you will join us in person for this event but if you are unable you can sign up for the live stream version here.
The fact that advanced kidney disease is more dangerous than most cancers is not widely appreciated beyond the sphere of those who study and care for these patients. The risk of death faced by a young adult dialysis patient is 50-100 fold greater than that of a person of similar age without kidney disease. The impact of kidney disease on survival exhibits a dose-response effect, with increasingly powerful negative effects seen as the level of kidney function falls. Most deaths are cardiac and the effect is seen regardless of the cause of the kidney disease, though may be amplified by some, for example, diabetes.
Successful transplantation dramatically reduces this hazard, though does not eliminate it. Diverse biomechanical and metabolic disturbances, increasingly florid as the level of kidney function falls, are the main drivers but drilling down reveals daunting complexity and remains a work in progress. Mitigation centres around prevention of the primary kidney disease (often not possible), slowing its progression, or substitution by transplantation (hindered by inadequate organ supply and loss of some grafts from rejection and other causes). Dialysis is both the least effective and the most expensive treatment option for end-stage kidney disease, being much inferior to transplantation which provides a rare example of "cheap is best" in the healthcare setting.
Professor Sir John Cunningham is a Professor of Nephrology at University College London Medical School/The Royal Free Hospital and an Honorary Fellow at Trinity Hall, Cambridge. He is a graduate of the universities of Cambridge and Oxford, followed by postgraduate training in London and Washington University School of Medicine, St Louis, USA. He is an active clinician and researcher with contributions to the understanding of the effect of acidosis on the bioactivation of vitamin D, the influence of simulated uraemia and vitamin D on the release of cytokines by bone cells, factors mediating bone loss following renal transplantation and the control of parathyroid function by structurally modified vitamin D metabolites and calcimimetics. He has also focussed increasingly on the links between mineral metabolism and cardiovascular disease in CKD and the reasons for the high cardiovascular morbidity and mortality in these individuals. He was Physician to HM The Queen and Head of the Medical Household from 2005-2014 and was knighted for services to The Queen in 2014. He serves on various grant-giving bodies and guideline groups, and lectures nationally and internationally.
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