Adenosine receptors as emerging therapeutic targets for diabetic kidney disease

Eun Seon Pak, Jin Joo Cha, Dae Ryong Cha, Keizo Kanasaki, Hunjoo Ha

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


Diabetic kidney disease (DKD) is now a pandemic worldwide, and novel therapeutic options are urgently required. Adenosine, an ade-nosine triphosphate metabolite, plays a role in kidney homeostasis through interacting with four types of adenosine receptors (ARs): A1AR, A2AAR, A2BAR, and A3AR. Increasing evidence highlights the role of adenosine and ARs in the development and progression of DKD: 1) increased adenosine in the plasma and urine of diabetics with kidney injury, 2) increased expression of each of the ARs in diabetic kidneys, 3) the protective effect of coffee, a commonly ingested nonselective AR antagonist, on DKD, and 4) the protective effect of AR modulators in experimental DKD models. We propose AR modulators as a new therapeutic option to treat DKD. Detailed mechanistic studies on the pharmacology of AR modulators will help us to develop effective first-in-class AR modulators against DKD.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)S74-S88
JournalKidney Research and Clinical Practice
StatePublished - 2022

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
The preparation of this manuscript was supported by a National Research Foundation grant (No. 2020R1A6A3 A13076183), Republic of Korea, and by Ewha Womans University (No. 1-2021-1301-001-1).

Publisher Copyright:
© 2022 by The Korean Society of Nephrology.


  • Adenosine
  • Diabetic kidney disease
  • Fibrosis
  • Purinergic P1 receptor agonists
  • Purinergic P1 receptor antagonists
  • Purinergic P1 receptors


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