Serum sclerostin in vascular calcification and clinical outcome in chronic kidney disease

Diab Vasc Dis Res. 2018 Mar;15(2):99-105. doi: 10.1177/1479164117742316. Epub 2017 Nov 23.


Sclerostin, a potent soluble inhibitor of the Wnt signalling pathway, is known to inhibit bone formation by suppressing osteocytes differentiation and function. Patients with chronic kidney disease have high levels of serum sclerostin. Sclerostin has been implicated in the pathogenesis of vascular calcification, which may promote the cardiovascular events of morbidity and mortality in chronic kidney disease patients. However, the role of sclerostin in vascular calcification and clinical prognosis in chronic kidney disease remains elusive. While some studies suggested a positive correlation between serum sclerostin and vascular calcification or clinical outcome, other studies showed no or even negative correlation between them. Small sample size, heterogeneity in enrolled patients, discrepancy in anatomical structure examined and differences in the applied assays may be responsible for the discrepant results. Nonetheless, anti-sclerostin antibodies may be a new therapeutic approach to increase bone mass and strength in chronic kidney disease. This review aims to have a better understanding of the relationship of serum sclerostin with vascular calcification and clinical outcome in chronic kidney disease patients, and propose the application of anti-sclerostin therapy in chronic kidney disease.

Keywords: Chronic kidney disease; Wnt; sclerostin; vascular calcification.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Adaptor Proteins, Signal Transducing
  • Animals
  • Bone Morphogenetic Proteins / blood*
  • Genetic Markers / genetics
  • Humans
  • Prognosis
  • Renal Insufficiency, Chronic / blood*
  • Renal Insufficiency, Chronic / complications
  • Renal Insufficiency, Chronic / diagnosis*
  • Vascular Calcification / blood
  • Vascular Calcification / diagnosis*


  • Adaptor Proteins, Signal Transducing
  • Bone Morphogenetic Proteins
  • Genetic Markers
  • SOST protein, human