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A bench to bedside view of uremic toxins.


Reviewing the current picture of uremic toxicity reveals its complexity. Focusing on cardiovascular damage as a model of uremic effects resulting in substantial morbidity and mortality, most molecules with potential to affect the function of a variety of cell types within the vascular system are difficult to remove by dialysis. Examples are the larger middle molecular weight molecules and protein-bound molecules. Recent clinical studies suggest that enhancing the removal of these compounds is beneficial for survival. Future therapeutic options are discussed, including improved removal of toxins and the search for pharmacologic strategies blocking responsible pathophysiologic pathways.