Kidney omics in hypertension: from statistical associations to biological mechanisms and clinical applications

Maciej Tomaszewski, Andrew P. Morris, Joanna M.M. Howson, Nora Franceschini, James M. Eales, Xiaoguang Xu, Sergey Dikalov, Tomasz J. Guzik, Benjamin D. Humphreys, Stephen Harrap, Fadi J. Charchar

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

14 Scopus citations


Hypertension is a major cardiovascular disease risk factor and contributor to premature death globally. Family-based investigations confirmed a significant heritable component of blood pressure (BP), whereas genome-wide association studies revealed >1000 common and rare genetic variants associated with BP and/or hypertension. The kidney is not only an organ of key relevance to BP regulation and the development of hypertension, but it also acts as the tissue mediator of genetic predisposition to hypertension. The identity of kidney genes, pathways, and related mechanisms underlying the genetic associations with BP has started to emerge through integration of genomics with kidney transcriptomics, epigenomics, and other omics as well as through applications of causal inference, such as Mendelian randomization. Single-cell methods further enabled mapping of BP-associated kidney genes to cell types, and in conjunction with other omics, started to illuminate the biological mechanisms underpinning associations of BP-associated genetic variants and kidney genes. Polygenic risk scores derived from genome-wide association studies and refined on kidney omics hold the promise of enhanced diagnostic prediction, whereas kidney omics-informed drug discovery is likely to contribute new therapeutic opportunities for hypertension and hypertension-mediated kidney damage.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)492-505
Number of pages14
JournalKidney International
Issue number3
StatePublished - Sep 2022


  • blood pressure
  • gene expression
  • genetics
  • kidney


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