Medical Definition of Kidney stones, cystine

  • Medical Author:
    Melissa Conrad Stöppler, MD

    Melissa Conrad Stöppler, MD, is a U.S. board-certified Anatomic Pathologist with subspecialty training in the fields of Experimental and Molecular Pathology. Dr. Stöppler's educational background includes a BA with Highest Distinction from the University of Virginia and an MD from the University of North Carolina. She completed residency training in Anatomic Pathology at Georgetown University followed by subspecialty fellowship training in molecular diagnostics and experimental pathology.

Kidney stones, cystine: Cystine kidney stones are due to cystinuria, an inherited (genetic) disorder of the transport of an amino acid (a building block of protein) called cystine. The result is an excess of cystine in the urine (cystinuria) and the formation of cystine stones.

Cystinuria is the most common defect in the transport of an amino acid. Although cystine is not the only overly excreted amino acid in cystinuria, it is the least soluble of all naturally occurring amino acids. Cystine tends to precipitate out of urine and form stones (calculi) in the urinary tract.

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Reviewed on 12/31/2018

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