Molecular and cellular biochemistry

Premature aging in uremia.

PMID 17136440


Guanidinosuccinic acid is an aberrant metabolite isolated 40 years ago in the blood and urine of uremic subjects and a suspect in the toxicity associated with renal failure. It plays a minor role in the bleeding diathesis of uremia, contributes to the methyl group deficiency of dialysis patients, and is a factor in the premature atherosclerosis of end stage renal disease through the induction of hyperhomocysteinemia. As a major player, however, in the diversity and severity of uremic symptoms, it is a disappointment. Recently its source has been identified. It results from the superoxidation of argininosuccinic acid, which leads, also, to the production of gamma glutamic semialdehyde, an advanced glycation end product (AGE), which normally results from from the Maillard reaction, the non-enzymatic browning of protein. AGEs stimulate cross-linkages in protein that lead ultimately to loss of function, phagocytosis, and removal, and are important elements in the premature aging characteristic of renal disease, and diabetes.