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Experimental Diabetes Research
Volume 2012, Article ID 616313, 9 pages
Review Article

New Experimental Models of Diabetic Nephropathy in Mice Models of Type 2 Diabetes: Efforts to Replicate Human Nephropathy

1Department of Nephrology, Hospital del Mar-IMIM, 08010 Barcelona, Spain
2Division of Nephrology and Hypertension, Department of Medicine, Feinberg School of Medicine, Northwestern University, Chicago, IL, USA

Received 8 July 2011; Accepted 15 November 2011

Academic Editor: Yasuhiko Tomino

Copyright © 2012 María José Soler et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Diabetic nephropathy (DN) is the leading cause of end-stage renal disease. The use of experimental models of DN has provided valuable information regarding many aspects of DN, including pathophysiology, progression, implicated genes, and new therapeutic strategies. A large number of mouse models of diabetes have been identified and their kidney disease was characterized to various degrees. Most experimental models of type 2 DN are helpful in studying early stages of DN, but these models have not been able to reproduce the characteristic features of more advanced DN in humans such as nodules in the glomerular tuft or glomerulosclerosis. The generation of new experimental models of DN created by crossing, knockdown, or knockin of genes continues to provide improved tools for studying DN. These models provide an opportunity to search for new mechanisms involving the development of DN, but their shortcomings should be recognized as well. Moreover, it is important to recognize that the genetic background has a substantial effect on the susceptibility to diabetes and kidney disease development in the various models of diabetes.