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The first documented case of PKD dates back to Stefan Bathory, the King of Poland, who lived from 1533 to 1588. Dr Richard Bright, an English physician, first described polycystic kidneys in the early 1800's. It is likely that many patients who were said to have 'Bright's disease' actually suffered from PKD.

Despite this, significant research breakthroughs into PKD only occured in the 1990s.

Investigators discovered the general location of the ADPKD PKD-1 gene on chromosome 16. Approximately 85% of ADPKD patients have PKD-1.

Investigators discovered the location of the ADPKD PKD-2 gene on chromosome 4.

Dr. Peter C. Harris, PhD. and his team of researchers at the Mayo Clinic identify and fully characterised the gene causing ARPKD.

Vasopressin V2 receptor antagonist is shown to be effective in the prevention of kidney enlargement in a mouse model of ADPKD.

The PKD Charity co-funded, with the help of the PKD Foundation (US) and The Novartis Foundation, a two-day meeting on ‘Calcium, cAMP and the pathogenesis of Polycystic Kidney Disease’. UK and international scientists and clinicians attended to discuss the molecular basis of PKD, and the potential for therapeutic intervention based on latest research in the field. Read the meeting report.

PKD Charity funds its first UK research project, jointly with the PKD Foundation (US), in memory of Dr Peter Lockyer, a former chairman of the organisation who died in December 2006. Dr Albert Ong of the Sheffield Kidney Institute was commissioned to research a new compound that he hopes will be effective not just for the kidney but also work on blood vessels and the liver.

First global clinical trial of TOLVAPTAN, a drug shown to be effective in preventing cyst growth in rodents. Click to read more about the trial.

The PKD Charity held its 1st International Scientific and Medical Conference on ADPKD in London, attended by over 210 scientists and clinicians.

The PKD Charity funds a Bio-resource Bank at UCL Centre for Nephrology, Royal Free London NHS Foundation Trust. Read more about the Bio-resource Bank.

The UK ADPKD and ARPKD Study Groups are formed, under the Renal Association/Renal Registry.

The results of the Tolvaptan global clinical trials are published. The drug reduced the rate of increase in polycystic kidney volume, lessened symptoms such as pain and reduced the rate of kidney function decline. Read more about the Tolvaptan trial here.

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