Peritoneal dialysis is an efficient renal replacement therapy for uremic patients but is currently under-prescribed. This is partly due to the unfavorable effects on peritoneal morphology and function (bioincompatibility) of current glucose-based solutions. Use of standard solutions can cause several peritoneal alterations including inflammation, mesothelial to mesenchymal transition, and neo-angiogenesis. The final step is fibrosis, which reduces the peritoneal filtration capacity and can lead to ultrafiltration failure and transfer of the patient to hemodialysis. Bioincompatibility can be local (peritoneum) but also systemic, due to the excessive absorption of glucose from the dialysate. Several strategies have been adopted to improve the biocompatibility of peritoneal dialysis solutions, based on the alleged causal factors. Some new solutions available on the market contain low glucose degradation products and neutral pH, others contain icodextrin or aminoacids. Clinical benefits have been associated with the use of these solutions, which however have some limitations and a debated biocompatibility profile. More recent strategies include the use of cytoprotective agents or osmo-metabolic agents in the dialysate. In this article, we review the different approaches currently under development to improve the biocompatibility of peritoneal dialysis solution and hence the clinical outcome and the viability of the technique.
Keywords: peritoneal dialysis, biocompatibility, peritoneum, dialysate, peritoneal dialysis solution