The number of end-stage renal disease (ESRD) patients is progressively growing with more than 60,000 ESRD patients on renal replacement therapy in Korea. The mortality risk in ESRD patients is approximately 10 to 20-fold higher compared to the general population, which is mainly attributed to prevalent cardiovascular disease in these patients. However, the risk factors for cardiovascular disease in ESRD patients are different from the general population, and useful biomarkers for predicting cardiovascular mortality are not completely defined. The nationwide multicenter Clinical Research Center (CRC) for ESRD program was initiated in Korea not only to elucidate the incidence and prevalence of cardiovascular disease in ESRD patients but also to identify potential risk factors including various biomarkers for cardiovascular disease. A prospective cohort of 864 incident hemodialysis patients, from 34 dialysis centers of the CRC for ESRD in Korea, was followed up for 36 months, and the clinical outcome of these patients was reviewed. This article presents the recent data from the CRC for ESRD program, and, in addition, brief reviews on key risk factors and potential biomarkers for cardiovascular disease in ESRD patients.
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