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Nephron. 1999 Jun;82(2):164-73.

High glucose induces a hypertrophic, senescent mesothelial cell phenotype after long in vivo exposure.

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Department of Nephrology and Hypertension and Kornach Laboratory for Experimental Nephrology, 'Ha'Emek' Medical Center, Afula, Israel.


Previous studies, done using our mouse model for population analysis of the mesothelium, showed evidence indicating that in vivo, long-term exposure (up to 30 days) of the peritoneum to high-glucose (4.25% D-glucose) concentration dialysis solutions resulted in a hypertrophic mesothelial phenotype characterized by increased cell surface area, multinucleation, low proliferative capabilities, reduced cell viability, and enhanced enzymatic activity. These elements that define a senescent population of cells were not related to the pH of the fluid and its osmolality, or to the presence of buffer lactate. The present study was designed to explore the adverse effects of a lactate-free, filter-sterilized, high-D-glucose concentration solution (4.25%) at normal pH and prepared in Hanks' buffered salt solution after 2 h, 15 and 30 days of once a day intraperitoneal injection. Analysis of our observations indicate that in vivo exposure of the mesothelium to a high-glucose concentration induced a decreased density of the cell population, made up by larger and multinucleated cells, the viability of which was significantly lower than that observed in intact unexposed mice. The prevalence of mitosis showed an early and short-lived acceleration (up to 3 days), followed by values near zero during the rest of the follow-up period. So far, the main effect of the high-glucose concentration appears to result not from a mechanism of cytotoxicity, but from a substantial change in the life cycle of the exposed cell population, leading to their premature senescence and death in apoptosis. We hypothesize that this outcome may well be mediated by sustained oxidative stress derived from both a reduced production of scavengers, as well as the increased generation of oxygen-reactive species.

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