A slit in podocyte death.
ABSTRACT Recent advances have identified the podocyte as a key target in glomerular injury. The podocyte is a highly specialized cell which is responsible for the glomerular permselectivity for proteins in the kidney. Podocyte injury or loss leads to proteinuria. Apoptosis has been shown to contribute to renal cell loss, including loss of podocytes. The most striking feature of the podocyte is its ability to form intricate specialized cell junctions, the slit diaphragm. Slit diaphragm proteins play an important role in podocyte biology, protein permselectivity, cell signalling and disease. This review focuses on recent advances on the understanding of podocyte survival regulation, its relationship to slit diaphragm structure and function, and how this knowledge may affect our therapeutic approach to proteinuric kidney disease.
- SourceAvailable from: Jose M Valdivielso[Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: Transforming growth factor-β1 (TGF-β1) and the macrophage inhibitory factor receptor CD74 link the metabolic disorder with tissue injury in diabetic nephropathy. Fabry disease is an X-linked lysosomal glycosphingolipid storage disorder resulting from a deficient activity of α-galactosidase A that leads to proteinuric renal injury. However, the link between the metabolic abnormality and renal injury is poorly characterized. Globotriaosylsphingosine (lyso-Gb3) was recently identified as a bioactive molecule accumulating in Fabry disease. We hypothesized that lyso-Gb3 could modulate the release of secondary mediators of injury in glomerular podocytes and that recently described nephroprotective actions of vitamin D receptor activation in diabetic nephropathy may apply to lyso-Gb3. Real time RT-PCR, ELISA and Western blot were used to study the biological activity of lyso-Gb3 in cultured human podocytes and potential modulation by vitamin D receptor activation. In human podocytes, lyso-Gb3 dose and time dependently increased the expression of TGF-β1, extracellular matrix proteins (fibronectin and type IV collagen) and CD74. TGF-β1 mediated lyso-Gb3 effects on extracellular matrix production. Vitamin D receptor activation with paricalcitol or calcitriol prevented the increase in TGF-β1, CD74 and extracellular matrix induced by lyso-Gb3. Lyso-Gb3 may have a role in glomerular injury in Fabry disease by promoting the release of secondary mediators of glomerular injury common to diabetic nephropathy. These effects are prevented by paricalcitol, raising the issue of vitamin D receptor activation as potential adjunctive therapy in Fabry nephropathy.Nephrology Dialysis Transplantation 06/2011; 26(6):1797-802. · 3.37 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Podocytes are specialized cells that contribute critically to the normal structure and function of the glomerular filtration barrier. Their depletion plays an important role in the pathogenesis of glomerulosclerosis. Here, we report generation of a genetic model of conditional podocyte ablation and regeneration in zebrafish using a bacterial nitroreductase strategy to convert a prodrug, metronidazole, into a cytotoxic metabolite. A transgenic zebrafish line was generated that expresses green fluorescence protein (GFP) and the nitroreductase fusion protein under the control of the podocin promoter Tg(podocin:nitroreductase-GFP). Treatment of these transgenic zebrafish with metronidazole results in podocyte apoptosis, a loss of nephrin and podocin expression, foot process effacement, and a leaky glomerular filtration barrier. Following metronidazole washout, proliferating cells were detected in the glomeruli of recovering transgenic fish with a restoration of nitroreductase-GFP fluorescence, nephrin and podocin expression, a reestablishment of normal foot process architecture, and glomerular barrier function. Thus, our studies show that zebrafish podocytes are capable of regenerating following depletion, and establish the Tg(podocin:NTR-GFP) fish as a new model to study podocyte injury and repair.Kidney International advance online publication, 6 March 2013; doi:10.1038/ki.2013.6.Kidney International 03/2013; · 7.92 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Neph1 is present in podocytes, where it plays a critical role in maintaining the filtration function of the glomerulus, in part through signaling events mediated by its cytoplasmic domain that are involved in actin cytoskeleton organization. To understand the function of this protein, a detailed knowledge of the structure of the Neph1 cytoplasmic domain (Neph1-CD) is required. In this study, the solution structure of this domain was determined by small/wide angle x-ray scattering (SWAXS). Analysis of Neph1-CD by SWAXS suggested that this protein adopts a global shape with a radius of gyration and a maximum linear dimension of 21.3 and 70 Å, respectively. These parameters and the data from circular dichroism experiments were used to construct a structural model of this protein. The His-ZO-1-PDZ1 (first PDZ domain of zonula occludens) domain that binds Neph1-CD was also analyzed by SWAXS, to confirm that it adopts a global structure similar to its crystal structure. We used the SWAXS intensity profile, the structural model of Neph1-CD, and the crystal structure of ZO-1-PDZ1 to construct a structural model of the Neph1-CD·ZO-1-PDZ1 complex. Mapping of the intermolecular interactions suggested that in addition to the C-terminal residues Thr-His-Val, residues Lys-761 and Tyr-762 in Neph1 are also critical for stabilizing the complex. Estimated intensity values from the SWAXS data and in vivo and in vitro pull-down experiments demonstrated loss of binding to ZO-1 when these residues were individually mutated to alanines. Our findings present a structural model that provides novel insights into the molecular structure and function of Neph1-CD.Journal of Biological Chemistry 01/2012; 287(12):9441-53. · 4.65 Impact Factor