New research into the origin of kidney stone formation published in the March 1 issue of the Journal of Clinical Investigation may well change the direction of the most basic level of research in that area.
The study, conducted at Indiana University School of Medicine, Clarian Health Partners and the University of Chicago, will dispel the current beliefs of where stone formation begins, said Andrew P. Evan, Ph.D., the articles lead author. Dr. Evan, who is a professor of anatomy and cell biology at IU School of Medicine, said the research did confirm a hypothesis published in 1940 by Alexander Randall, M.D.
Dr. Randall theorized that kidney stones developed from crystals of calcium phosphate in a centrally located area of the kidney known as the papilla tip. However, analytical and imaging tools available during Dr. Randalls day were inadequate to confirm his hypothesis. Today, the primary theory is that cell injury is necessary before crystals can attach to kidney tissue and develop and that crystals are composed of calcium oxalate. Both theories were refuted by the current Clinical Investigation article.
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