There is an increasing number of patients with diabetes mellitus in many countries. Diabetic kidney disease, one of its microvascular complications, is also increasing markedly and has become a major cause of end stage renal disease worldwide. Intervention for preventing and delaying the development and progression of diabetic kidney disease is not only a medical concern, but also a social issue. Despite extensive efforts, however, medical interventions thus far are not effective enough to prevent the progression of the disease and the development of end stage renal disease. This justifies attempts to develop novel therapeutic approaches for diabetic nephropathy. Recent insights on its pathogenesis and progression have suggested new targets for the specific treatment of this disease. They include aldosterone, aldose reductase, arachidonic acid metabolites, growth factors, advanced glycosylation end-products, peroxisome proliferator-activated receptors and endothelin. Several other biochemical mediators have been targeted in experimental animal models with the goal to prevent diabetic nephropathy progression, but translation to clinics of these experimental achievements are still limited or lacking.