Background and objectives Plasma copeptin, a marker of arginine vasopressin, is elevated in patients with autosomal dominant polycystic kidney disease and predicts disease progression. It is unknown whether elevated copeptin levels result from decreased kidney clearance or as compensation for impaired concentrating capacity. Data from patients with autosomal dominant polycystic kidney disease and healthy kidney donors before and after donation were used, because after donation, overall GFR decreases with a functionally normal kidney.
Design, setting, participants, & measurements Data were obtained between October of 2008 and January of 2012 from healthy kidney donors who visited the institution for routine measurements predonation and postdonation and patients with autosomal dominant polycystic kidney disease who visited the institution for kidney function measurement. Plasma copeptin levels were measured using a sandwich immunoassay, GFR was measured as I-125-iothalamate clearance, and urine concentrating capacity was measured as urine-to-plasma ratio of urea. In patients with autosomal dominant polycystic kidney disease, total kidney volume was measured with magnetic resonance imaging.
Results Patients with autosomal dominant polycystic kidney disease (n=122, age=40 years, men=56%) had significantly higher copeptin levels (median=6.8 pmol/L; interquartile range=3.4-15.7 pmol/L) compared with donors (n=134, age=52 years, men=49%) both predonation and postdonation (median=3.8 pmol/L; interquartile range=2.8-6.3 pmol/L; P
Conclusions On the basis of the finding in donors that kidney clearance is not a main determinant of plasma copeptin levels, it was hypothesized that, in patients with autosomal dominant polycystic kidney disease, kidney damage and associated impaired urine concentration capacity determine copeptin levels.