Susceptibility loci for murine HIV-associated nephropathy encode trans-regulators of podocyte gene expression.
ABSTRACT: Multiple studies have linked podocyte gene variants to diverse sporadic nephropathies, including HIV-1-associated nephropathy (HIVAN). We previously used linkage analysis to identify a major HIVAN susceptibility locus in mouse, HIVAN1. We performed expression quantitative trait locus (eQTL) analysis of podocyte genes in HIV-1 transgenic mice to gain further insight into genetic susceptibility to HIVAN. In 2 independent crosses, we found that transcript levels of the podocyte gene nephrosis 2 homolog (Nphs2), were heritable and controlled by an ancestral cis-eQTL that conferred a 3-fold variation in expression and produced reactive changes in other podocyte genes. In addition, Nphs2 expression was controlled by 2 trans-eQTLs that localized to the nephropathy susceptibility intervals HIVAN1 and HIVAN2. Transregulation of podocyte genes was observed in the absence of HIV-1 or glomerulosclerosis, indicating that nephropathy susceptibility alleles induce latent perturbations in the podocyte expression network. Presence of the HIV-1 transgene interfered with transregulation, demonstrating effects of gene-environment interactions on disease. These data demonstrate that transcript levels of Nphs2 and related podocyte-expressed genes are networked and suggest that the genetic lesions introduced by HIVAN susceptibility alleles perturb this regulatory pathway and transcriptional responses to HIV-1, increasing susceptibility to nephropathy.
Project description:HIVAN1, HIVAN2, and HIVAN3 are nephropathy-susceptibility loci previously identified in the HIV-1 transgenic mouse, a model of collapsing glomerulopathy. The HIVAN1 and HIVAN2 loci modulate expression of Nphs2, which encodes podocin and several other podocyte-expressed genes. To identify additional loci predisposing to nephropathy, we performed a genome-wide scan in 165 backcross mice generated between the nephropathy-sensitive HIV-1-transgenic FVB/NJ (TgFVB) strain and the resistant Balb/cJ (BALB) strain. We identified a major susceptibility locus (HIVAN4) on chromosome 6 G3-F3, with BALB alleles conferring a twofold reduction in severity (peak LOD score = 4.0). Similar to HIVAN1 and HIVAN2, HIVAN4 modulated expression of Nphs2, indicating a common pathway underlying these loci. We independently confirmed the HIVAN4 locus in a sister TgFVB colony that experienced a dramatic loss of nephropathy subsequent to a breeding bottleneck. In this low-penetrance line, 3% of the genome was admixed with BALB alleles, suggesting a remote contamination event. The admixture localized to discrete segments on chromosome 2 and at the HIVAN4 locus. HIVAN4 candidate genes include killer lectin-like receptor genes as well as A2m and Ptpro, whose gene products are enriched in the glomerulus and interact with HIV-1 proteins. In summary, these data identify HIVAN4 as a major quantitative trait locus for nephropathy and a transregulator of Nphs2. Furthermore, similar selective breeding strategies may help identify further susceptibility loci.
Project description:HIV-1 transgenic mice on the FVB/NJ background (TgFVB) represent a validated model of HIV-associated nephropathy (HIVAN). A major susceptibility locus, HIVAN1, was previously mapped to chromosome 3A1-A3 in a cross between TgFVB and CAST/EiJ (CAST) strains, and introgression of a 51.9 Mb segment encompassing HIVAN1 from CAST into TgFVB resulted in accelerated development of nephropathy. We generated three sub-congenic strains carrying CAST alleles in the proximal or distal regions of the HIVAN1 locus (Sub-II, 3.02-38.93 Mb; Sub-III, 38.45-55.1 Mb and Sub-IV, 47.7-55.1 Mb, build 38). At 5-10 weeks of age, histologic injury and proteinuria did not differ between HIV-1 transgenic Sub-II and TgFVB mice. In contrast, HIV-1 transgenic Sub-III and Sub-IV mice displayed up to 4.4 fold more histopathologic injury and 6-fold more albuminuria compared to TgFVB mice, similar in severity to the full-length congenic mice. The Sub-IV segment defines a maximal 7.4 Mb interval for HIVAN1, and encodes 31 protein coding genes: 15 genes have missense variants differentiating CAST from FVB, and 14 genes show differential renal expression. Of these, Frem1, Foxo1, and Setd7 have been implicated in the pathogenesis of nephropathy. HIVAN1 congenic kidneys are histologically normal without the HIV-1 transgene, yet their global transcriptome is enriched for molecular signatures of apoptosis, adenoviral infection, as well as genes repressed by histone H3 lysine 27 trimethylation, a histone modification associated with HIV-1 life cycle. These data refine HIVAN1to 7.4 Mb and identify latent molecular derangements that may predispose to nephropathy upon exposure to HIV-1.
Project description:HIV-1-associated nephropathy (HIVAN) is a major complication of HIV-1 infection with distinct pathologic features. Introduction of the HIV-1 genome into mice results in a renal disease with all of the histologic and clinical hallmarks of HIVAN on the FVB/N genetic background (TgFVB). We assessed the influence of genetic background on the development or progression of HIVAN by making F1 hybrids of TgFVB with five other inbred strains (CBA, DBA/2, CAST/Ei, C3H/He, BALB/c) and determining phenotypes relevant to renal failure among transgenic offspring (histology, blood urea nitrogen, proteinuria, serum albumin, and serum cholesterol). We found striking variation in phenotypes among F1s, ranging from severe renal disease to no renal disease whatsoever (P<0.001 for ANOVA across all groups). To map genes responsible for this variation, we produced a backcross of TgFVB/CAST F1 x TgFVB. By genome-wide analysis of linkage in 185 heterozygous transgenic backcross mice, we identified a locus on chromosome 3A1-3, HIVAN1, that showed highly significant linkage to renal disease [logarithm of odds (lod) score 4.9 at D3Mit203, accounting for 15% of the variance in renal disease]. Other loci on chromosomes 11, 14, and 16 were suggestive of linkage to renal disease, and a locus on chromosome 9 influenced serum cholesterol but not nephropathy. Interestingly, HIVAN1 is syntenic to human chromosome 3q25-27, an interval showing suggestive evidence of linkage to various nephropathies. These findings demonstrate a strong genetic influence on HIVAN and demonstrate a major renal disease susceptibility locus on mouse chromosome 3A1-3.
Project description:HIV-1 transgenic mice on the FVB/NJ background (TgFVB) are a well validated model of HIV-associated nephropathy (HIVAN). A mapping study between TgFVB and CAST/EiJ (CAST) strains showed this trait to be influenced by a major susceptibility locus on chromosome 3A1-A3 (HIVAN1), with CAST alleles associated with increased risk of disease. We introgressed a 50 Mb interval, encompassing this HIVAN1 locus, from CAST into the TgFVB genome (TgFVB-HIVAN1(CAST) congenic mice). Compared to the TgFVB strain, these congenic mice developed an earlier onset of proteinuria, a rapid progression to kidney failure, and increased mortality. A prospective study of these congenic mice also showed that they had a significantly greater histologic and biochemical evidence of glomerulopathy with one-third of mice developing global glomerulosclerosis by 6 weeks of age. An F2 cross between TgFVB and the congenic mice identified a significant linkage (LOD=3.7) to a 10 cM interval within the HIVAN1 region between D3Mit167 and D3Mit67 resulting in a 60% reduction of the original interval. These data independently confirm that a gene on chromosome 3A1-A3 increases susceptibility to HIVAN, resulting in early onset and rapid progression of kidney disease. These mice represent a new model to study the development and progression of collapsing glomerulopathy.
Project description:Expression profiling comparing healthy kidneys of wild-type FVB mice and wild-type full congenic FVB-HIVAN1CAST mice HIV-1 transgenic mice on the FVB/NJ background (TgFVB) represent a validated model of HIV-associated nephropathy (HIVAN). A major susceptibility locus, HIVAN1, was previously mapped to chromosome 3A1-A3 in a cross between TgFVB and CAST/EiJ (CAST) strains, and introgression of a 51.9 Mb segment encompassing HIVAN1 from CAST into TgFVB results in accelerated development of nephropathy. We performed genome-wide expression profiling of whole kidneys from wild-type (without the HIV-1 transgene) full congenic FVB-HIVAN1CAST and FVB mouse strains, with the goal of identifying genes with differential renal expression in the HIVAN1 locus that may be associated with the development of nephropathy upon exposure to HIV-1. We only profiled healthy wild-type kidneys because the profound histopathological lesions of HIV-1 transgenic mice introduce many secondary gene expression changes that can confound interpretation of transcriptomic data. Overall design: We performed microarray analysis with the Affymetrix ST 1.0 gene arrays on kidney RNA from 20 FVB-HIVAN1CAST congenic mice (11 females / 9 males) and 19 FVBN/J littermates (10 females / 9 males). Sample preparation, labeling and hybridization were performed as per Affymetrix recommended protocol. Signal intensities were normalized using the RMA method.
Project description:All-trans retinoic acid protects against the development of HIV-associated nephropathy (HIVAN) in HIV-1 transgenic mice (Tg26). In vitro, all-trans retinoic acid inhibits HIV-induced podocyte proliferation and restores podocyte differentiation markers by activating its receptor-α (RARα). Here, we report that Am580, a water-soluble RARα-specific agonist, attenuated proteinuria, glomerosclerosis, and podocyte proliferation, and restored podocyte differentiation markers in kidneys of Tg26 mice. Furthermore, RARα-/- Tg26 mice developed more severe kidney and podocyte injury than did RARα+/- Tg26 mice. Am580 failed to ameliorate kidney injury in RARα-/- Tg26 mice, confirming our hypothesis that Am580 acts through RARα. Although the expression of RARα-target genes was suppressed in the kidneys of Tg26 mice and of patients with HIVAN, the expression of RARα in the kidney was not different between patients with HIVAN and minimal change disease. However, the tissue levels of retinoic acid were reduced in the kidney cortex and isolated glomeruli of Tg26 mice. Consistent with this, the expression of two key enzymes in the retinoic acid synthetic pathway, retinol dehydrogenase type 1 and 9, and the overall enzymatic activity for retinoic acid synthesis were significantly reduced in the glomeruli of Tg26 mice. Thus, a defect in the endogenous synthesis of retinoic acid contributes to loss of the protection by retinoic acid in HIVAN. Hence, RARα agonists may be potential agents for the treatment of HIVAN.
Project description:African polymorphisms in the gene for Apolipoprotein L1 (APOL1) confer a survival advantage against lethal trypanosomiasis but also an increased risk for several chronic kidney diseases (CKD) including HIV-associated nephropathy (HIVAN). APOL1 is expressed in renal cells, however, the pathogenic events that lead to renal cell damage and kidney disease are not fully understood. The podocyte function of APOL1-G0 versus APOL1-G2 in the setting of a known disease stressor was assessed using transgenic mouse models. Transgene expression, survival, renal pathology and function, and podocyte density were assessed in an intercross of a mouse model of HIVAN (Tg26) with two mouse models that express either APOL1-G0 or APOL1-G2 in podocytes. Mice that expressed HIV genes developed heavy proteinuria and glomerulosclerosis, and had significant losses in podocyte numbers and reductions in podocyte densities. Mice that co-expressed APOL1-G0 and HIV had preserved podocyte numbers and densities, with fewer morphologic manifestations typical of HIVAN pathology. Podocyte losses and pathology in mice co-expressing APOL1-G2 and HIV were not significantly different from mice expressing only HIV. Podocyte hypertrophy, a known compensatory event to stress, was increased in the mice co-expressing HIV and APOL1-G0, but absent in the mice co-expressing HIV and APOL1-G2. Mortality and renal function tests were not significantly different between groups. APOL1-G0 expressed in podocytes may have a protective function against podocyte loss or injury when exposed to an environmental stressor. This was absent with APOL1-G2 expression, suggesting APOL1-G2 may have lost this protective function.
Project description:Studies have shown that podocytes and renal tubular epithelial cells from patients with HIV-associated nephropathy (HIVAN) express HIV-1 transcripts, suggesting that productive infection of renal epithelial cells precipitates development of HIVAN. However, podocytes and renal tubular epithelial cells do not express CD4 receptors, and it is unclear how these cells become productively infected in vivo We investigated the mechanisms underlying the infection by HIV-1 of podocytes cultured from the urine of children with HIVAN. We observed low-level productive infection on exposure of these cells to primary cell-free HIV-1 supernatants. However, envelope-defective recombinant HIV-1 did not infect the renal epithelial cell lines. Moreover, treatment of podocytes to inhibit endocytic transport or dynamin activity or remove cell surface heparan sulfate proteoglycans reduced infection efficiency. Transfection of CD4- 293T cells with a cDNA expression library developed from a podocyte cell line derived from a child with HIVAN led to the identification of TNF-? as a possible mediator of HIV-1 infection. Overexpression of transmembrane TNF-? in cultured CD4- renal tubular epithelial cells, 293T cells, and HeLa cells enabled the infection of these cells; exposure to soluble TNF-? did not. Immunohistochemistry showed TNF-? expression in podocytes of renal sections from children with HIVAN. Furthermore, we found that TNF-? enhanced NF-?B activation and integration of HIV-1 into the podocyte DNA. Finally, inhibition of dynamin activity blocked TNF-?-mediated infection. These data establish a role for transmembrane TNF-? in facilitating the viral entry and integration of HIV-1 into the DNA of renal epithelial cells.
Project description:In patients of African ancestry, genetic variants in APOL1, which encodes apolipoprotein L1, associate with the nondiabetic kidney diseases, focal segmental glomerulosclerosis (FSGS), HIV-associated nephropathy (HIVAN), and hypertensive nephropathy. Understanding the renal localization of APOL1 may provide clues that will ultimately help elucidate the mechanisms by which APOL1 variants promote nephropathy. Here, we used immunohistology to examine APOL1 localization in normal human kidney sections and in biopsies demonstrating either FSGS (n = 8) or HIVAN (n = 2). Within normal glomeruli, APOL1 only localized to podocytes. Compared with normal glomeruli, fewer cells stained for APOL1 in FSGS and HIVAN glomeruli, even when expression of the podocyte markers GLEPP1 and synaptopodin appeared normal. APOL1 localized to proximal tubular epithelia in normal kidneys, FSGS, and HIVAN. We detected APOL1 in the arteriolar endothelium of normal and diseased kidney sections. Unexpectedly, in both FSGS and HIVAN but not normal kidneys, the media of medium artery and arterioles contained a subset of ?-smooth muscle actin-positive cells that stained for APOL1. Comparing the renal distribution of APOL1 in nondiabetic kidney disease to normal kidney suggests that a previously unrecognized arteriopathy may contribute to disease pathogenesis in patients of African ancestry.
Project description:We previously reported that podocyte-specific deletion of Myh9 (conventional myosin heavy chain 2A) in C57BL/6 mice does not cause spontaneous kidney disease but instead results in a predisposition to glomerulosclerosis in response to a second model of glomerular injury. In contrast, other investigators reported that podocyte-specific deletion of Myh9 (Pod?Myh9) resulted in spontaneous glomerulosclerosis in mice on a mixed background, suggesting that the glomerulosclerosis is dependent on background strain. In order to elucidate the cause of this strain dependent effect Podocin::Cre and Myh9(flox) alleles were backcrossed to mouse strain FVB/N, which is highly susceptible to glomerulosclerosis, with the aim of intercrossing susceptible FVB/N and resistant C57BL/6 mice in subsequent congenic analyses. However, after backcrossing mice to FVB/N and aging mice to 28 weeks, we found no evidence of glomerular disease in Pod?Myh9 mice vs control littermates (urine MAC ratio all p>0.05). We also tested C57BL/6 Pod?Myh9 mice for a predisposition to injury from models other than Adriamycin including HIV nephropathy (HIVAN), puromycin nephropathy, and sheep nephrotoxic serum. In the Tg26 model of HIVAN, we found that podocyte-specific deletion of Myh9 resulted in a modest hypersensitivity in adults compared to Tg26+ control littermates (urine MAC ratio, p<0.05 or less). In contrast, we found that Pod?Myh9 mice were not predisposed to injury in response to other injury models including puromycin nephropathy and sheep nephrotoxic serum. While the mechanism of injury in these models is not fully understood, we conclude that Pod?Myh9 results in a variable susceptibility to glomerulosclerosis in response to different models of glomerular injury. In addition, based on the lack of a spontaneous phenotype of glomerulosclerosis in both C57BL/6 and FVB/N mice, we propose that Myh9 is not absolutely required in adult podocytes.