The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) has funded four grants that will serve as pioneers in using data from the VA’s Million Veteran Program (MVP), a major step in the VA’s effort to advance precision medicine. The four funded grants will answer key questions about heart disease, kidney disease, and substance use.

ASN President Thomas Coffman and The Sopranos actor Vincent Curatola.

For the Renal Week edition of ASN Kidney News, editor-in-chief Pascale Lane, MD, interviewed ASN President Thomas Coffman, MD, and incoming ASN President Sharon Anderson, MD.

"Up in Space: Medicine off the Earth” was the topic of a lecture by Jonathan B. Clark at Kidney Week 2011. Clark is assistant professor of neurology and space medicine at Baylor College of Medicine and Center for Space Medicine. He is also clinical assistant professor at the University of Texas Medical Branch. He worked at NASA as a space shuttle crew surgeon from 1997 to 2005.

With health care expenditures constituting more than 17 percent of the U.S. gross domestic product, lawmakers and physicians continue to search for ways to control costs while providing effective, evidence-based care.

The ABIM Foundation asked each partnering society to review its current practices and suggest five items that, based on the latest evidence on disease management and treatment, are overused or misused or could jeopardize patient safety and care. Each society submitted its list of Five Things Physicians and Patients Should Question.

A 10-minute bedside test of frailty can predict the likelihood of delayed graft function (DGF) in patients undergoing kidney transplants, according to a new study in the Archives of Surgery. Frailty has emerged as an important characteristic of health state in the elderly, but in this study, the effect of frailty on DGF was independent of age.