Recent studies have focused on associations of the APOL1 risk variants with outcomes beyond kidney disease, including cardiovascular disease and mortality. Ma and colleagues now expand on this growing but contradicting body of work. Their analysis of a prevalent cohort of African American hemodialysis patients shows that the risk variants are associated with a survival benefit among nondiabetics. Whether this simply reflects a healthier status at hemodialysis initiation among those carrying 2 risk variants or whether these variants truly confer a survival advantage is unclear.
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