Experimental studies incriminate glomerular hypertension in mediating progressive renal damage after any of a variety of initiating injuries. Prevention of glomerular hypertension by dietary protein restriction or antihypertensive therapy lessens progressive glomerular damage in several experimental models of chronic renal disease. Glomerular hypertension and hyperfiltration also occur in humans with diabetes mellitus, solitary or remnant kidneys, and various forms of acquired renal disease. Clinical studies indicate that dietary protein restriction and antihypertensive therapy also slow progression in many of these disorders. Large multicenter trials confirm the beneficial effects of these therapeutic maneuvers on the rate of progression of chronic renal disease.