Mitochondria: a therapeutic target in acute kidney injury

Nephrol Dial Transplant. 2016 Jul;31(7):1062-9. doi: 10.1093/ndt/gfv317. Epub 2015 Sep 1.


Acute kidney injury (AKI) is a common clinical entity that is associated with high mortality and morbidity. It is a risk factor for the development and progression of chronic kidney disease. Presently, no effective treatment for AKI is available, and novel therapeutic approaches are desperately needed. Accumulating evidence highlights mitochondrial dysfunction as an important factor in the pathogenesis of AKI. Recent advances in our understanding of the molecules involved in mitochondrial biogenesis, fusion/fission, mitophagy and their pathophysiological roles will lead to the development of drugs that target mitochondria for the treatment of various diseases, including AKI. In this review, we summarize current knowledge of the contribution of mitochondria-related pathophysiology in AKI and the prospective benefits of mitochondria-targeting therapeutic approaches against AKI.

Keywords: acute kidney disease; mitochondrial biogenesis; mitochondrial fusion and fission; mitophagy; tubular damage.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Acute Kidney Injury / drug therapy*
  • Acute Kidney Injury / physiopathology
  • Animals
  • Humans
  • Mitochondria / drug effects*
  • Mitochondria / metabolism
  • Mitochondria / pathology
  • Pharmaceutical Preparations / administration & dosage*


  • Pharmaceutical Preparations