Sexual dimorphism in development of kidney damage in aging Fischer-344 rats.
ABSTRACT Aging kidneys exhibit slowly developing injury and women are usually protected compared with men, in association with maintained renal nitric oxide.
Our purpose was to test 2 hypotheses: (1) that aging intact Fischer-344 (F344) female rats exhibit less glomerular damage than similarly aged males, and (2) that loss of female ovarian hormones would lead to greater structural injury and dysregulation of the nitric oxide synthase (NOS) system in aging F344 rat kidneys.
We compared renal injury in F344 rats in intact, ovariectomized, and ovariectomized with estrogen replaced young (6 month) and old (24 month) female rats with young and old intact male rats and measured renal protein abundance of NOS isoforms and oxidative stress.
There was no difference in age-dependent glomerular damage between young or old intact male and female F344 rats, and neither ovariectomy nor estrogen replacement affected renal injury; however, tubulointerstitial injury was greater in old males than in old females. These data suggest that ovarian hormones do not influence these aspects of kidney aging in F344 rats and that the greater tubulointerstitial injury is caused by male sex. Old males had greater kidney cortex NOS3 abundance than females, and NOS1 abundance (alpha and beta isoforms) was increased in old males compared with both young males and old females. NOS abundance was preserved with age in intact females, ovariectomy did not reduce NOS1 or NOS3 protein abundance, and estrogen replacement did not uniformly elevate NOS proteins, suggesting that estrogens are not primary regulators of renal NOS abundance in this strain. Nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide phosphate oxidase-dependent superoxide production and nitrotyrosine immunoreactivity were increased in aging male rat kidneys compared with females, which could compromise renal nitric oxide production and/or bioavailability.
The kidney damage expressed in aging F344 rats is fairly mild and is not related to loss of renal cortex NOS3 or NOS1 alpha.
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ABSTRACT: The percentage of the U.S. population over 65 is rapidly increasing, as is the incidence of chronic kidney disease (CKD). The kidney is susceptible to age-dependent alterations in structure, specifically tubulointerstitial fibrosis, that lead to CKD. Matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs) were initially characterized as extracellular matrix (ECM) proteinases; however it is clear that their biological role is much larger. We have observed increased gene expression of several MMPs in the aging kidney, including MMP-7. MMP-7 overexpression was observed starting at 16 months, and over a 500 fold up-regulation in 2 year-old animals. Overexpression of MMP-7 is not observed in age-matched, calorically restricted controls that do not develop fibrosis and renal dysfunction, suggesting a role in the pathogenesis. In order to delineate the contributions of MMP-7 to renal dysfunction, we overexpressed MMP-7 in NRK-52E cells. High-throughput sequencing of the cells revealed that two collagen genes, Col1a2 and Col3a1, were elevated in the MMP-7 overexpressing cells. These two collagen genes were also elevated in aging rat kidneys and temporally correlated with increased MMP-7 expression. Addition of exogenous MMP-7, or conditioned media from MMP-7 overexpressing cells also increased Col1A2 expression. Inhibition of PKA, src, and MAPK signaling at p38 and ERK was able to attenuate the MMP-7 up-regulation of Col1a2. Consistent with this finding, increased phosphorylation of PKA, src and ERK was seen in MMP-7 overexpressing cells and upon exogenous MMP-7 treatment of NRK-52E cells. These data suggest a novel mechanism by which MMP-7 contributes to the development of fibrosis leading to CKD.Physiological reports. 10/2013; 1(5).