New insights into muscle function in chronic kidney disease and metabolic acidosis

Megan Chalupsky, David Alex Goodson, Jorge L. Gamboa, Baback Roshanravan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


PURPOSE OF REVIEW: : Sarcopenia, defined as decreased muscle mass or function, is prevalent in chronic kidney disease (CKD) increasing the risk of mobility impairment and frailty. CKD leads to metabolic acidosis (MA) and retention of uremic toxins contributing to insulin resistance and impaired muscle mitochondrial energetics. Here we focus on the central role of muscle mitochondrial metabolism in muscle function. RECENT FINDINGS: : Mitochondrial dysfunction underlies muscle wasting and poor physical endurance in CKD. Uremic toxins accumulate in muscle disrupting mitochondrial respiration and enzymes. Changes in mitochondrial quantity, quality, and oxidative capacity contribute to mobility impairment in CKD. Major determinants of muscle mitochondrial function are kidney function, inflammation, and oxidative stress. In CKD, MA is the major determinant of muscle mitochondrial function. Metabolomics reveals defects in pathways linked to mitochondrial energy metabolism and acid-base homeostasis underlying insulin resistance in CKD. SUMMARY: : Decreased mitochondrial capacity and quality control can impair muscle function contributing to decreased physical endurance. MA augments insulin resistance perpetuating the catabolic state underlying muscle wasting in CKD. Further studies are needed to investigate if targeting of MA improves muscle mitochondrial function and insulin resistance translating into meaningful improvements in physical endurance.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)369-376
Number of pages8
JournalCurrent Opinion in Nephrology and Hypertension
Issue number3
StatePublished - May 1 2021

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Internal Medicine
  • Nephrology


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