Director’s View: A Rich and Diverse Division

The Division of Pediatric Nephrology at Johns Hopkins specializes in the diagnosis and management of children with a variety of acute and chronic kidney-related disorders. We've come to understand pediatric kidney disease is really a constellation of diseases we must tackle individually. Our faculty and staff evaluate and treat hypertension, hematuria, proteinuria, renal tubular acidosis, nephrolithiasis, glomerulonephritis, and kidney failure. We also provide comprehensive care for pediatric patients with end-stage kidney disease, including care to patients undergoing peritoneal dialysis, hemodialysis and follow-up care after kidney transplantation.

In an effort to improve treatment and outcomes in pediatric patients with kidney disease, our faculty are engaged in a diverse range of clinical activities and ongoing research. Alicia Neu, for example, concentrates her efforts on children with chronic kidney disease, nephrotic syndrome, optimal care of the child on dialysis, as well as on outcomes in end-stage renal disease. Tammy Brady's focus is on pediatric hypertension, which has lead to the development of a multidisciplinary obesity hypertension clinic. Cozumel Pruette's interests include pediatric hypertension and home telemonitoring to improve blood pressure monitoring and medication adherence. Jeffrey Fadrowski continues to investigate hematuria, kidney transplant, and the role of heavy metals in kidney disease. Meredith Atkinson has been targeting her research activities on the mechanisms and treatment of anemia in chronic kidney disease, as well as on racial disparities in patient outcomes. Sangeeta Sule has been targeting rheumatic diseases in children, including lupus, juvenile rheumatoid arthritis and scleroderma, among others. My energies have been directed toward the safety and efficacy of various vaccines in children maintained on dialysis and in kidney transplant recipients. I've helped lay the groundwork for the current standards for vaccinating children with chronic kidney disease, and over the last 15 years I've worked to develop quality measures for pediatric patients with CKD. All of our efforts have resulted in greater understanding of these diseases and improved care for these patients.

The division also strives to enhance the well-being of patients and their families through many advocacy projects, including a transplant reunion and Camp All-Stars, an overnight program for children, teens and young adults with kidney disease.

I am thankful to be able to collaborate with an outstanding group of clinicians, physician scientists and staff dedicated to caring for the child with kidney disease. Thank you and please enjoy this issue of e-Nephrology News.