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Nephrol Dial Transplant. 2009 Jul;24(7):2161-9. doi: 10.1093/ndt/gfp063. Epub 2009 Feb 18.

Urinary proteome pattern in children with renal Fanconi syndrome.

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Department of Paediatric Nephrology, Children's Hospital, Hannover Medical School, Hannover, Germany.



The renal Fanconi syndrome (FS) is characterized by renal glucosuria, loss of electrolytes, bicarbonate and lactate, generalized hyperaminoaciduria and low-molecular-weight proteinuria. We studied the urinary low-molecular-weight proteome to identify excreted peptides indicative of a pathogenetic mechanism leading to tubular dysfunction.


We established a urinary proteome pattern using capillary electrophoresis mass spectrometry (CE-MS) of 7 paediatric patients with cystinosis and 6 patients with ifosfamide-induced FS as the study group, and 54 healthy volunteers and 45 patients suffering from other renal diseases such as lupus nephritis (n = 8), focal segmental glomerulosclerosis (n = 27), minimal change disease (n = 7) and membranous glomerulonephritis (n = 3) as controls. Consequently, we conducted a blinded study consisting of 11 FS patients and 9 patients with renal disease other than FS. Additionally, we applied this pattern to 294 previously measured samples of patients with different renal diseases. Amino acid sequences of some marker proteins were obtained.


Specificity for detecting FS was 89% and sensitivity was 82%. The marker peptides constituting the proteome pattern are fragments derived from osteopontin, uromodulin and collagen alpha-1.


CE-MS can be used to diagnose FS in paediatric patients and might be a future tool for the non-invasive diagnosis of FS. The reduced amount of the marker proteins osteopontin and uromodulin indicates loss of function of tubular excretion in all patients suffering from FS regardless of the underlying cause. In addition, the six different fragments of the collagen alpha-1 (I) chain were either elevated or reduced in the urine. This indicates a change of proteases in collagen degradation as observed in interstitial fibrosis. These changes were prominent irrespectively of the stages of FS. This indicates fibrosis as an early starting pathogenetic reason for the development of renal insufficiency in FS patients.

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