Klotho, phosphate and inflammation/ageing in chronic kidney disease.
Evidence is emerging for the inflammatory nature of many ageing-associated diseases, including atherosclerosis, vascular calcification, diabetes and chronic kidney disease (CKD), among others. Ageing itself results in chronic low-grade inflammation that promotes end-organ damage. Inflammatory organ damage, in turn, may contribute to inflammation. Recent research has identified the kidney-secreted hormone Klotho as a central player at the ageing-inflammation interface. Thus, systemic or local renal inflammation decreases kidney Klotho expression. Klotho down-regulation may be induced by specific cytokines such as tumour necrosis factor-α or TWEAK through the canonical activation of the inflammatory transcription factor nuclear factor kappa B (NFκB) and, specifically RelA. In addition, inflammatory cytokines lead to the epigenetic inactivation of Klotho transcription. Klotho itself has antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties and the canonical NFκB component RelA is one of its targets. Klotho is a key regulator of phosphate balance and a role of phosphate in ageing has been shown. However, the potential relationship between phosphate and inflammation requires further clarification. A correct understanding of these interactions may lead to the design of novel therapeutic approaches to CKD and CKD-related inflammatory and ageing features as well as to inflammation/ageing in general.