One of the first seminal papers that identified kidneys as the source of erythropoietin was published in 1961 by a Polish hematologist Professor Zofia Kuratowska and co-workers from the Warsaw Medical University who performed a series of in vitro experiments in isolated mice organs perfused with the blood taken from the hypoxemic animals. Later, a strong position of our country in renal anemia research has been due to an active involvement in nearly all large multicentre clinical studies that led to the approval of epoetins and its analogues. Four Polish centres took part in first European studies on the use of erythropoietin alfa to treat anemia in hemodialysis patients (1988-1989) and in non-dialysis subjects with chronic kidney disease (1990). The success of the studies resulted in the approval of erythropoietin alfa in Poland already in 1989 shortly after it introduction in Europe. The first patient in the world who received in 2001 methoxy polyethylene glycol-epoetin beta in a phase 2 clinical trial was a 44 year old woman chronically dialyzed in Gdańsk. Polish investigators were also involved in the studies with epo-mimetic peginesatide. Poland was also the best-recruiting country in phase 2 and 3 clinical trials with HIF-1 inhibitors. For the last three decades polish academic nephrologists have published over a hundred articles in the field of renal anemia. Polish nephrologists contributed also to the development of the European guidelines for renal anemia.
Erythropoietin stimulating agents, renal anemia, darbepoietin alfa, CERA, EPO-mimetics, inhibitor of prolyl hydroxylase