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Clin Nephrol. 2003 Sep;60(3):187-94.

Lupus-like nephritis in an HIV-positive patient: report of a case and review of the literature.

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  • 1Division of Allergy/lmmunology and Rheumatology, University of Rochester Medical Center, Rochester, NY 14642, USA.


The most common manifestation of HIV/AIDS in the kidney is the collapsing variant of focal segmental glomerular sclerosis, HIV-associated nephropathy (HIVAN). Other forms of renal disease in HIV-infected patients include mesangial proliferative glomerulonephritis (GN), membranoproliferative GN, IgA nephropathy, minimal change disease and proliferative immune-complex GN. We present the case of a 42-year-old Caucasian male with HIV infection, treatment associated peripheral neuropathy, nephrotic syndrome and progressive renal failure. The initial and subsequent kidney biopsies showed diffuse proliferative glomerulonephritis resembling diffuse proliferative (WHO class IV) lupus nephritis. There was no clinical or serological evidence of systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE). Proteinuria improved with ACE-inhibitors, and renal function remained relatively stable while receiving highly active antiretroviral therapy (HAART). A precipitous decline in renal function to end-stage renal disease followed a brief period of withdrawal from potent antiretroviral therapy during which the viral load rebounded. Considering previously reported cases, it appears that lupus-like nephritis is a rare but well-defined pattern of immune-complex-induced renal injury seen in HIV-infected patients. It appears to be markedly responsive to HAART.

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