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Tomas Berl MD


 Content Editor Web Part

Professor of Medicine, Division of Renal Diseases and Hypertension/ Professor of Medicine

office phone: 303-724-4803
e-mail address:

Areas of Interest - Research

Basic Science: I have had a long lasting interest in the control of water excretion and the regulation of the vasopressin secretion and action. Most recently my research has focused on the mechanisms that allow renal cells to survive in the hypertonic environment of the inner medulla. We examine the role of protein kinases in the osmoregulated response as well as the role of the Na/K ATPAsae and particularly its y subunit. The laboratory employs cellular and molecular biology approaches in cultured inner medullary collecting duct cells and then extends these observations to the study of the inner medulla in various states of hydration. These studies shed light on the process that allows the countercurrent mechanisms to function normally in the inner medulla. Clinical Science: My recent interest in the clinical investigations area has focused on diabetic nephropathy. As an active investigator of the Collaborative Study Group I have been involved in large scale clinical trials in the progression of nephropathy in type 1 and type 2 diabetes as well as the cardiovascular outcomes of such trials.


  1. Capasso J, Rivard C, Berl T: The expression of the ã subunit of NaKATPase is regulated by osmolality by c-terminal Jun Kinase and P13 kinase dependant mechanisms. PNAS, 98:13414-13419, 2001.

  2. Berl T, Hunsicker L, Lewis J, Pfeffer M: Cardiovascular Outcomes of the IDNT Trial. Ann. Int. Med 138:542-49,2003.

  3. Capasso J, Rivard C, Enomoto L, Berl T. Chloride, not sodium, stimulates expression of the ã subunit of NaKATPase and activation of c-Jun N-terminal kinase in response to hypertonicity in mouse IMCD3 cell. PNAS 100 (11):6428-33. 2003.

  4. Capasso J, Rivard C, Berl T. The synthesis of the NA/K-ATPase ã subunit is regulated at both the transcriptional and translational levels in Inner Medullary Collecting Duct (IMCD3) cells. Am J Physiol Renal Physiol. 2005 Jan;288(1):F76-F81

  5. Berl T, Hunsicker L., Lewis J. et al. Impact of achieved blood pressure on cardiovascular outcomes in the iresartan diabetic nephropathy trial. JASN 16:2170-2170, 2005.

  6. Capasso JM, Rivard CJ, Berl T: Silencing and overexpression of the gamma-subunit of Na-K-ATPase directly affect survival of IMCD3 cells in response to hypertonic stress. Am J Physiol Renal Physiol 291:F1142-1147, 2006

  7. Schrier RW, Gross P, Gheorghiade M, Berl T et al.: Tolvaptan, a selective oral vasopressin V2-receptor antagonist, for hyponatremia. N Engl J Med 355:2099-2112, 2006

  8. Berl T and Henrich W, Kidney-Heart Interactions: Epidemiology, Pathogenesis, and Treatment. Clinical Journal of the American Society of Nephrology. CJASN 1:8-18, 2006