Administration of recombinant soluble urokinase receptor per se is not sufficient to induce podocyte alterations and proteinuria in mice.
ABSTRACT: Circulating levels of soluble forms of urokinase-type plasminogen activator receptor (suPAR) are generally elevated in sera from children and adults with FSGS compared with levels in healthy persons or those with other types of kidney disease. In mice lacking the gene encoding uPAR, forced increases in suPAR concentration result in FSGS-like glomerular lesions and proteinuria. However, whether overexpression of suPAR, per se, contributes to the pathogenesis of FSGS in humans remains controversial. We conducted an independent set of animal experiments in which two different and well characterized forms of recombinant suPAR produced by eukaryotic cells were administered over the short or long term to wild-type (WT) mice. In accordance with the previous study, the delivered suPARs are deposited in the glomeruli. However, such deposition of either form of suPAR in the kidney did not result in increased glomerular proteinuria or altered podocyte architecture. Our findings suggest that glomerular deposits of suPAR caused by elevated plasma levels are not sufficient to engender albuminuria.
Project description:Focal segmental glomerulosclerosis (FSGS) is a cause of proteinuric kidney disease, compromising both native and transplanted kidneys. Treatment is limited because of a complex pathogenesis, including unknown serum factors. Here we report that serum soluble urokinase receptor (suPAR) is elevated in two-thirds of subjects with primary FSGS, but not in people with other glomerular diseases. We further find that a higher concentration of suPAR before transplantation underlies an increased risk for recurrence of FSGS after transplantation. Using three mouse models, we explore the effects of suPAR on kidney function and morphology. We show that circulating suPAR activates podocyte ?(3) integrin in both native and grafted kidneys, causing foot process effacement, proteinuria and FSGS-like glomerulopathy. Our findings suggest that the renal disease only develops when suPAR sufficiently activates podocyte ?(3) integrin. Thus, the disease can be abrogated by lowering serum suPAR concentrations through plasmapheresis, or by interfering with the suPAR-?(3) integrin interaction through antibodies and small molecules targeting either uPAR or ?(3) integrin. Our study identifies serum suPAR as a circulating factor that may cause FSGS.
Project description:Increased plasma level of soluble urokinase-type plasminogen activator receptor (suPAR) was associated recently with focal segmental glomerulosclerosis (FSGS). In addition, different clinical studies observed increased concentration of suPAR in various glomerular diseases and in other human pathologies with nephrotic syndromes such as HIV and Hantavirus infection, diabetes and cardiovascular disorders. Here, we show that suPAR induces nephrin down-modulation in human podocytes. This phenomenon is mediated only by full-length suPAR, is time-and dose-dependent and is associated with the suppression of Wilms' tumor 1 (WT-1) transcription factor expression. Moreover, an antagonist of αvβ3 integrin RGDfv blocked suPAR-induced suppression of nephrin. These in vitro data were confirmed in an in vivo uPAR knock out Plaur(-/-) mice model by demonstrating that the infusion of suPAR inhibits expression of nephrin and WT-1 in podocytes and induces proteinuria. This study unveiled that interaction of full-length suPAR with αvβ3 integrin expressed on podocytes results in down-modulation of nephrin that may affect kidney functionality in different human pathologies characterized by increased concentration of suPAR.
Project description:The plasma soluble urokinase-type plasminogen activator receptor (suPAR) is a biomarker for focal segmental glomerulosclerosis (FSGS), but its value is under discussion because of ambiguous results arising from different ELISA methods in previous studies. The aim of this study was to compare diagnostic performance of two leading suPAR ELISA kits and examine four objectives in 146 subjects: (1) plasma suPAR levels according to glomerular disease (primary, secondary and recurrent FSGS after kidney transplantation, other glomerulonephritis) and in healthy controls; (2) suPAR levels based on glomerular filtration rate; (3) sensitivity and specificity of suPAR for FSGS diagnosis and determination of optimal cut-offs; (4) suPAR as prognostic tool. Patients with FSGS showed significant higher suPAR values than patients with other glomerulonephritis and healthy individuals. This applied to subjects with and without chronic kidney disease. Although both suPARnostic™ assay and Quantikine Human uPAR ELISA Kit exerted high sensitivity and specificity for FSGS diagnosis, their cut-off values of 4.644?ng/mL and 2.789?ng/mL were significantly different. Higher suPAR was furthermore predictive for progression to end-stage renal disease. In summary, suPAR values must be interpreted in the context of population and test methods used. Knowing test specific cut-offs makes suPAR a valuable biomarker for FSGS.
Project description:Soluble urokinase plasminogen activator receptor (suPAR) is an immune-derived circulating signaling molecule that has been implicated in chronic kidney disease, such as focal segmental glomerulosclerosis (FSGS). Typically, native uPAR (isoform 1) translates to a 3-domain protein capable of binding and activating integrins, yet the function of additional isoforms generated by alternative splicing is unknown. Here, we characterized mouse uPAR isoform 2 (msuPAR2), encoding domain I and nearly one-half of domain II, as a dimer in solution, as revealed by 3D electron microscopy structural analysis. In vivo, msuPAR2 transgenic mice exhibited signs of severe renal disease characteristic of FSGS with proteinuria, loss of kidney function, and glomerulosclerosis. Sequencing of the glomerular RNAs from msuPAR2-Tg mice revealed a differentially expressed gene signature that includes upregulation of the suPAR receptor Itgb3, encoding ?3 integrin. Crossing msuPAR2-transgenic mice with 3 different integrin ?3 deficiency models rescued msuPAR2-mediated kidney function. Further analyses indicated a central role for ?3 integrin and c-Src in msuPAR2 signaling and in human FSGS kidney biopsies. Administration of Src inhibitors reduced proteinuria in msuPAR2-transgenic mice. In conclusion, msuPAR2 may play an important role in certain forms of scarring kidney disease.
Project description:Excess levels of protein in urine (proteinuria) is a hallmark of kidney disease that typically occurs in conjunction with diabetes, hypertension, gene mutations, toxins or infections but may also be of unknown cause (idiopathic). Systemic soluble urokinase plasminogen activator receptor (suPAR) is a circulating factor implicated in the onset and progression of chronic kidney disease (CKD), such as focal segmental glomerulosclerosis (FSGS). The cellular source(s) of elevated suPAR associated with future and progressing kidney disease is unclear, but is likely extra-renal, as the pathological uPAR is circulating and FSGS can recur even after a damaged kidney is replaced with a healthy donor organ. Here we report that bone marrow (BM) Gr-1lo immature myeloid cells are responsible for the elevated, pathological levels of suPAR, as evidenced by BM chimera and BM ablation and cell transfer studies. A marked increase of Gr-1lo myeloid cells was commonly found in the BM of proteinuric animals having high suPAR, and these cells efficiently transmit proteinuria when transferred to healthy mice. In accordance with the results seen in suPAR-associated proteinuric animal models, in which kidney damage is caused not by local podocyte-selective injury but more likely by systemic insults, a humanized xenograft model of FSGS resulted in an expansion of Gr-1lo cells in the BM, leading to high plasma suPAR and proteinuric kidney disease. Together, these results identify suPAR as a functional connection between the BM and the kidney, and they implicate BM immature myeloid cells as a key contributor to glomerular dysfunction.
Project description:Proteinuria is a major determinant of adverse renal outcome, and its reduction slows renal progression in glomerular diseases. However, the optimal target of proteinuria in glomerular diseases is unclear, and discrepancies in the definition of proteinuria produce ambiguous findings. Here we investigated the optimal target of proteinuria by using different definitions of proteinuria. We analyzed 574 IgA nephropathy (IgAN), 175 membranous nephropathy (MGN), and 177 focal segmental glomerulosclerosis (FSGS) cases from 3 Korean kidney centers. We evaluated the impact of proteinuria on renal outcome with 2 definitions: time-average proteinuria (TAP) and time-varying proteinuria (TVP). The endpoint was renal progression, defined as a 50% decline in glomerular filtration rate or end-stage renal disease. During a median follow-up of 57.3 months, the primary outcome occurred in 54 patients with IgAN, 26 with MGN, and 30 with FSGS. Multivariate Cox regression using TAP indicated that there was a linear association between proteinuria and risk of renal progression in IgAN. However, moderate proteinuria was not associated with an increased risk of renal progression in MGN and FSGS. In contrast, the analysis by TVP showed that the risk significantly increased in proportion to proteinuria during follow-up in all 3 diseases. Our findings suggest that TVP-based model can delineate association between proteinuria and risk of renal progression better than TAP-based model, considering that TVP reflects the dynamic change of proteinuria over time. Thus, proteinuria reduction to the lowest possible level is required to improve renal outcomes in patients with glomerular diseases.
Project description:Minimal Change Disease (MCD) is a clinical condition characterized by acute nephrotic syndrome, no evident renal lesions at histology and good response to steroids. However, frequent recurrence of the disease requires additional therapies associated with steroids. Such multi-drug dependence and frequent relapses may cause disease evolution to focal and segmental glomerulosclerosis (FSGS) over time. The differences between the two conditions are not well defined, since molecular mechanisms may be shared by the two diseases. In some cases, genetic analysis can make it possible to distinguish MCD from FSGS; however, there are cases of overlap. Several hypotheses on mechanisms underlying MCD and potential molecular triggers have been proposed. Most studies were conducted on animal models of proteinuria that partially mimic MCD and may be useful to study glomerulosclerosis evolution; however, they do not demonstrate a clear-cut separation between MCD and FSGS. Puromycin Aminonucleoside and Adriamycin nephrosis are models of glomerular oxidative damage, characterized by loss of glomerular basement membrane polyanions resembling MCD at the onset and, at more advanced stages, by glomerulosclerosis resembling FSGS. Also Buffalo/Mna rats present initial lesions of MCD, subsequently evolving to FSGS; this mechanism of renal damage is clearer since this rat strain inherits the unique characteristic of overexpressing Th2 cytokines. In Lipopolysaccharide nephropathy, an immunological condition of renal toxicity linked to B7-1(CD80), mice develop transient proteinuria that lasts a few days. Overall, animal models are useful and necessary considering that they reproduce the evolution from MCD to FSGS that is, in part, due to persistence of proteinuria. The role of T/Treg/Bcells on human MCD has been discussed. Many cytokines, immunomodulatory mechanisms, and several molecules have been defined as a specific cause of proteinuria. However, the hypothesis of a single cell subset or molecule as cause of MCD is not supported by research and an interactive process seems more logical. The implication or interactive role of oxidants, Th2 cytokines, Th17, Tregs, B7-1(CD80), CD40/CD40L, c-Mip, TNF, uPA/suPAR, Angiopoietin-like 4 still awaits a definitive confirmation. Whole genome sequencing studies could help to define specific genetic features that justify a definition of MCD as a "clinical-pathology-genetic entity."
Project description:BACKGROUND:Acute kidney injury is common, with a major effect on morbidity and health care utilization. Soluble urokinase plasminogen activator receptor (suPAR) is a signaling glycoprotein thought to be involved in the pathogenesis of kidney disease. We investigated whether a high level of suPAR predisposed patients to acute kidney injury in multiple clinical contexts, and we used experimental models to identify mechanisms by which suPAR acts and to assess it as a therapeutic target. METHODS:We measured plasma levels of suPAR preprocedurally in patients who underwent coronary angiography and patients who underwent cardiac surgery and at the time of admission to the intensive care unit in critically ill patients. We assessed the risk of acute kidney injury at 7 days as the primary outcome and acute kidney injury or death at 90 days as a secondary outcome, according to quartile of suPAR level. In experimental studies, we used a monoclonal antibody to urokinase plasminogen activator receptor (uPAR) as a therapeutic strategy to attenuate acute kidney injury in transgenic mice receiving contrast material. We also assessed cellular bioenergetics and generation of reactive oxygen species in human kidney proximal tubular (HK-2) cells that were exposed to recombinant suPAR. RESULTS:The suPAR level was assessed in 3827 patients who were undergoing coronary angiography, 250 who were undergoing cardiac surgery, and 692 who were critically ill. Acute kidney injury developed in 318 patients (8%) who had undergone coronary angiography. The highest suPAR quartile (vs. the lowest) had an adjusted odds ratio of 2.66 (95% confidence interval [CI], 1.77 to 3.99) for acute kidney injury and 2.29 (95% CI, 1.71 to 3.06) for acute kidney injury or death at 90 days. Findings were similar in the surgical and critically ill cohorts. The suPAR-overexpressing mice that were given contrast material had greater functional and histologic evidence of acute kidney injury than wild-type mice. The suPAR-treated HK-2 cells showed heightened energetic demand and mitochondrial superoxide generation. Pretreatment with a uPAR monoclonal antibody attenuated kidney injury in suPAR-overexpressing mice and normalized bioenergetic changes in HK-2 cells. CONCLUSIONS:High suPAR levels were associated with acute kidney injury in various clinical and experimental contexts. (Funded by the National Institutes of Health and others.).
Project description:Urokinase (uPA) has the striking ability to cleave its receptor, uPAR, thereby inactivating the binding potential of this molecule. Here we demonstrate that the glycosylphosphatidylinositol (GPI) anchor of uPAR, which is attached to the third domain, is an important determinant in governing this reaction, even though the actual cleavage occurs between the first and second domains. Purified full-length GPI-anchored uPAR (GPI-uPAR) proved much more susceptible to uPA-mediated cleavage than recombinant truncated soluble uPAR (suPAR), which lacks the glycolipid anchor. This was not a general difference in proteolytic susceptibility since GPI-uPAR and suPAR were cleaved with equal efficiency by plasmin. Since the amino acid sequences of GPI-uPAR and suPAR are identical except for the C-terminal truncation, the different cleavage patterns suggest that the two uPAR variants differ in the conformation or the flexibility of the linker region between domains 1 and 2. This was supported by the fact that an antibody to the peptide AVTYSRSRYLE, amino acids 84-94 in the linker region, recognizes GPI-uPAR but not suPAR. This difference in the linker region is thus caused by a difference in a remote hydrophobic region. In accordance with this model, when the hydrophobic lipid moiety was removed from the glycolipid anchor by phospholipase C, low concentrations of uPA could no longer cleave the modified GPI-uPAR and the reactivity to the peptide antibody was greatly decreased. Naturally occurring suPAR, purified from plasma, was found to have a similar resistance to uPA cleavage as phospholipase C-treated GPI-uPAR and recombinant suPAR.
Project description:The soluble urokinase-type plasminogen activator receptor (suPAR) and the urokinase-type plasminogen activator receptor (uPAR) have been proposed as useful biomarkers of tumor progression. Recently, suPAR was associated with chemoresistance in lung cancer. However, its clinical significance in leukemia has not previously been investigated. The present study examined the plasma levels of suPAR and the expression of the uPAR on bone marrow (BM) cells in 86 patients with leukemia at diagnosis prior to chemotherapy and 26 normal subjects (control group). The plasma suPAR levels were measured using ELISA, whilst uPAR expression was assayed by flow cytometry analysis. In addition, cell surface uPAR expression on K562 and multidrug-resistant K562/ADM cell lines was studied by western blotting. On admission and follow-up, the levels of suPAR in patients with leukemia were significantly increased compared with controls. Systemic levels of suPAR were strongly associated with the numbers of white blood cells. A case was defined as uPAR-positive (uPAR+) if >20% of the gated cells expressed uPAR. In comparison with 26 healthy BM samples that were negative for uPAR expression, 48 (55.8%) of the 86 leukemia patients were uPAR+. uPAR expression on the cell surface of multidrug-resistant K562/ADM cells was increased compared with that on K562 cells. In conclusion, plasma suPAR expression may be a useful marker for subtype classification of patients with leukemia and cell surface uPAR may be associated with resistance to chemotherapy or disease progression.