Dichloroacetate treatment accelerates the development of pathology in rodent autosomal recessive polycystic kidney disease

Vincent H. Gattone, Robert L. Bacallao

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

4 Scopus citations


Dichloroacetate (DCA) is a toxicant by-product from the chlorination disinfection process for municipal water. The levels would not affect people with normal renal and liver function. However, people with impaired renal or liver function may have an increased susceptibility to DCA toxicity as those are the organs affected by DCA. People (and rodents) with polycystic kidney disease (PKD) are polyuric, drink more fluids, and have both renal and liver pathology. In PKD, renal tubules and biliary epithelial cells proliferate to form cysts, which can eventually cause renal and/or liver dysfunction. Therefore, PKD may be a predisposing condition with an increased sensitivity to DCA toxicity. PCK rats are an orthologous model of human autosomal recessive PKD and were treated with 75 mg/l DCA in their drinking water. Male and female PCK and male Sprague-Dawley rats were treated from 4 to 8 wk of age, after which the severity of the renal and liver pathology induced by DCA were assessed. Only male PCK rats were adversely affected by DCA treatment, with an increase in the severity of renal cystic disease evinced by an increase in cystic enlargement and proteinuria. In conclusion, the chlorination byproduct DCA may adversely affect those with a preexisting renal disease, especially those who are polydipsic, like those with PKD.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)F1144-F1148
JournalAmerican Journal of Physiology - Renal Physiology
Issue number10
StatePublished - Nov 15 2014


  • Chlorination byproducts
  • Dichloroacetate
  • Polycystic kidney disease
  • Rat
  • Water

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physiology
  • Urology
  • Medicine(all)

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