Top Sector Life Sciences & Health (LSH) entails a broad scope of disciplines, from pharmaceuticals to medical technology and from healthcare infrastructure to vaccination. To realise its mission – vital citizens in a healthy economy - the Top Sector builds on the strengths of the Dutch LSH sector to address the biggest societal challenges in prevention, cure and care. By funding multidisciplinary public-private partnerships (PPPs) the Top Sector aims to facilitate innovation. Here we give an overview of  a number of funded R&D projects by Top Sector LSH. The page is updated continuously.

Protection from Cardiovascular Disease by Magnesium

Cardiovascular disease in chronic kidney disease: The intermediary role of calciprotein particles and protection by magnesium

Because of supersaturation of calcium and phosphate concentration in plasma of both healthy subjects and especially patients with kidney disease, an intrinsic propensity to form nanocrystals exists in man. Intrinsic defense against this formation exists, and may be strengthened by supplementing magnesium. In addition, biological defense mechanisms exist against the induction of inflammation and calcification by these nanocrystals. Magnesium may also take part in this line of defense against vascular disease, besides the anti-aging protein Klotho. Three Dutch universities (Vumc, RadboudUMC and UMCG) joined forces with three committed companies (NedMag, Fresenius Medical Care and Calciscon) to study these mechanisms to develop novel treatment concepts and protocols.

Vascular disease, including inflammation and calcification, underlies one of the most important threats to public health. In kidney disease, these processes occur at accelerated pace, posing high risk to these patients. In turn, this provides opportunity to study and intervene underlying mechanisms more efficiently, and results may be translated to other populations as well.

In this research project experimental studies will reveal underlying mechanisms how nanocrystals damage cellular and matrix components of the arterial wall, and how both klotho and magnesium may provide protection. In epidemiological analysis in cohorts ranging from the general population to advanced kidney failure, both the formation rate of these nanocrystals and their absolute number will be used to study to what extent these contribute to clinical events. Finally, in three prospective trials, the modifiability of the formation of these nanocrystals by increasing magnesium intake will be studied. In addition, the effects of these interventions on vascular properties will be examined.

The results of these studies may not only reveal currently unknown mechanisms, but may also provide innovative approaches of primary and secondary prevention of cardiovascular disease, in both patients with kidney disease, but also other at risk. In addition, by quantifying treatment effects on formation of nanocrystals in vivo, treatment can be tailored to individual needs.