Display Settings:


Send to:

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
Diabetes. 2008 Oct;57(10):2824-33. doi: 10.2337/db08-0647. Epub 2008 Jul 22.

Inducible overexpression of sFlt-1 in podocytes ameliorates glomerulopathy in diabetic mice.

Author information

  • 1Cardiovascular Division, King's College London School of Medicine, Guy's Hospital, King's College London, London, UK.



Podocyte-specific, doxycycline (DOX)-inducible overexpression of soluble vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) receptor-1 (sFlt-1) in adult mice was used to investigate the role of the VEGF-A/VEGF receptor (VEGFR) system in diabetic glomerulopathy.


We studied nondiabetic and diabetic transgenic mice and wild-type controls treated with vehicle (VEH) or DOX for 10 weeks. Glycemia was measured by a glucose-oxidase method and blood pressure by a noninvasive technique. sFlt-1, VEGF-A, VEGFR2, and nephrin protein expression in renal cortex were determined by Western immunoblotting; urine sFlt-1, urine free VEGF-A, and albuminuria by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay; glomerular ultrastructure by electron microscopy; and VEGFR1 and VEGFR2 cellular localization with Immunogold techniques.


Nondiabetic DOX-treated transgenic mice showed a twofold increase in cortex sFlt-1 expression and a fourfold increase in sFlt-1 urine excretion (P < 0.001). Urine free VEGF-A was decreased by 50%, and cortex VEGF-A expression was upregulated by 30% (P < 0.04). VEGFR2 expression was unchanged, whereas its activation was reduced in DOX-treated transgenic mice (P < 0.02). Albuminuria and glomerular morphology were similar among groups. DOX-treated transgenic diabetic mice showed a 60% increase in 24-h urine sFlt-1 excretion and an approximately 70% decrease in urine free VEGF-A compared with VEH-treated diabetic mice (P < 0.04) and had lower urine albumin excretion at 10 weeks than VEH-treated diabetic (d) mice: d-VEH vs. d-DOX, geometric mean (95% CI), 117.5 (69-199) vs. 43 (26.8-69) mug/24 h (P = 0.003). Diabetes-induced mesangial expansion, glomerular basement membrane thickening, podocyte foot-process fusion, and transforming growth factor-beta1 expression were ameliorated in DOX-treated diabetic animals (P < 0.05). Diabetes-induced VEGF-A and nephrin expression were not affected in DOX-treated mice.


Podocyte-specific sFlt-1 overexpression ameliorates diabetic glomerular injury, implicating VEGF-A in the pathogenesis of this complication.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

Images from this publication.See all images (8)Free text

FIG. 1.
FIG. 2.
FIG. 3.
FIG. 4.
FIG. 5.
FIG. 6.
FIG. 7.
FIG. 8.
PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Full text links

    Icon for HighWire Icon for PubMed Central
    Loading ...
    Write to the Help Desk