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Your Environment. Your Health.

Third International Workshop on Chronic Kidney Diseases of Uncertain/Non-traditional Etiology in Mesoamerica and Other Regions

March 20 – 22, 2019
San José, Costa Rica

Workshop Report

Workshop Purpose

Chronic Kidney Diseases that cannot be explained by traditional risk factors or of known causes continues to be increasingly recognized in specific geographic regions. The disease, referred to here as Chronic Kidney Disease of uncertain/nontraditional etiology (CKDu), has also been referred to as Mesoamerican Nephropathy (MeN), Chronic Interstitial Nephritis of Agricultural Communities (CINAC), or Kidney Disease of Unknown Cause in Agricultural Laborers (KDUCAL).

A notable burden falls on individuals living in poverty, including agricultural workers and other manual laborers. Despite some advances in research, the etiology of this disease remains unclear. An international workshop is planned through collaboration across the National Institutes of Health (National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS) and National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK)), World Health Organization Regional Offices (Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) and South-East Asia Regional Office (SEARO), and the Consortium for the Epidemic of Nephropathy in Central America and Mexico (CENCAM). This workshop built on the efforts of previous workshops organized by CENCAM, WHO, and/or NIH (see reports from previous international workshops below), expanding the reach to international experts working in known and potentially emerging regions affected by CKDu.

The workshop brought together experts from a range of disciplines and geographic areas. Retaining the spirit of the previous international workshops, all attendees participated in roundtable discussions (meet others/share experiences/exchange ideas) as well as focused working groups with scientific experts. Topics covered four broad themes: Clinical aspects, burden of disease, mechanisms/etiology, and societal response. The content of the working groups and talks included updates on the state of the science, expanded collaboration, standardization of global research protocols, recommendations for intervention and prevention strategies, cross-disciplinary education, and dissemination of workshop results.

Reports from Previous International Workshops

Workshop Agenda and Meeting Materials

Pre-Workshop Reading


For questions that can't be answered by the content of this website, please contact:

Bonnie R. Joubert, Health Scientist Administrator
Tel 984-287-3276

Organizing Committee

(members listed below in alphabetical order)
  • Daniel Brooks, CENCAM
  • Ricardo Correa-Rotter, CENCAM
  • Jennifer Crowe, CENCAM
  • Marvin González, CENCAM
  • Kristina Jakobsson, CENCAM
  • Bonnie Joubert, NIEHS
  • Paul Kimmel, NIDDK
  • Ty Lawson, NIEHS
  • Susan Mendley, NIDDK
  • Brittany Trottier, NIEHS
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