Chronic Kidney Disease of nontraditional causes (CKDnT) is a fatal progressive loss of kidney function that has killed more than 20,000 people in a singled decade in Central America alone. Current theories contend that CKDnT is multi-causal. Researchers hypothesize that heat stress and dehydration due to excessive workload cause repeated kidney injury. Environmental exposures, naturally occurring or introduced toxins like fertilizers or pesticides, may be drivers as well. Repeated kidney injuries lead to scarring and culminate in the progressive loss of kidney function. While Ebola has killed around 14,000 since its discovery in 1976, receiving billions in resources, CKDnT has killed many times more, but has received insufficient funding with which to confront a dire public and occupational health crisis affecting many times more people.
La Isla Network is the leading research organization focused on heat stress prevention and mitigation of CKDnT among at-risk workers and their communities worldwide through a collaborative, multidisciplinary approach. LIN is improving working conditions, standardizing research protocols, supporting responsible transitions to modernized industrial practices, and providing data-driven policy recommendations to address the CKDnT crisis.
The Adelante Initiative in Nicaragua is working toward solutions to CKDnt by creating safe, productive work practices in the sugarcane industry and beyond.