Serum creatinine during physiological perinatal dehydration may estimate individual nephron endowment

Gianluigi Ardissino, Francesca Tel, Ilaria Possenti, Mariangela Pavesi, Michela Perrone, Giulia Forni, Patrizia Salice, Lorenzo Colombo, Stefano Ghirardello, Bianca Castiglione, Dario Consonni, Laura Baca, Daniela Li Vecchi, Giancarlo la Marca, Fabio Mosca

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


It is well known that the nephron endowment of healthy subjects is highly variable and that individual nephron mass has potentially important implications both in health and disease. However, nephron count is technically impossible in living subjects. Based on the observation of an increase in serum creatinine (sCr) in otherwise healthy newborns with solitary kidney during the physiological perinatal dehydration, we hypothesized that perinatal sCr might be helpful in identifying healthy subjects with a reduced nephron mass. In the framework of a study on blood pressure in babies (NeoNeph), sCr of normal Caucasian neonates was determined 48–96 h after birth and their association with a family history of arterial hypertension (AH) was analyzed. SCr was determined in 182 normal newborns (90 males) at a mean of 61 ± 8 h after birth (range 46–82). Newborns with paternal AH had a higher mean sCr (0.97 + 0.28 mg/dL) then newborns without paternal AH (0.73 + 0.28 mg/dL; p = 0.006). No differences in mean sCr were found in relation with mother or grandparent’s history of AH. Conclusion: The association between parental AH and high sCr during perinatal dehydration supports the hypothesis that the latter is a promising tool for identifying normal subjects with a reduced nephron mass with potential important implications in prevention and in understanding the individual outcome of renal and extrarenal diseases (including AH).(Table presented.)

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1383-1388
Number of pages6
JournalEuropean Journal of Pediatrics
Issue number9
Publication statusPublished - 2018


  • Arterial hypertension
  • Blood Pressure
  • Nephron endowment
  • Newborn
  • Perinatal serum creatinine

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health


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