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Free Radic Biol Med. 2010 Apr 15;48(8):1109-17. doi: 10.1016/j.freeradbiomed.2010.01.029. Epub 2010 Jan 29.

Protection of podocytes from hyperhomocysteinemia-induced injury by deletion of the gp91phox gene.

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1
Department of Pharmacology & Toxicology, Medical College of Virginia, Virginia Commonwealth University, Richmond, VA 23298, USA.

Abstract

In this study, mice lacking the gp91(phox) gene were used to address the role of NADPH oxidase in hyperhomocysteinemia-induced podocyte injury. It was found that a folate-free diet increased plasma homocysteine levels, but failed to increase O(2)(-) production in the glomeruli from gp91(phox) gene knockout (gp91(-/-)) mice, compared with wild-type (gp91(+/+)) mice. Proteinuria and glomerular damage index (GDI) were significantly lower, whereas the glomerular filtration rate (GFR) was higher in gp91(-/-) than in gp91(+/+) mice when they were on the folate-free diet (urine albumin excretion, 21.23+/-1.88 vs 32.86+/-4.03 microg/24 h; GDI, 1.17+/-0.18 vs 2.59+/-0.49; and GFR, 53.01+/-4.69 vs 40.98+/-1.44 microl/min). Hyperhomocysteinemia-induced decrease in nephrin expression and increase in desmin expression in gp91(+/+) mice were not observed in gp91(-/-) mice. Morphologically, foot process effacement and podocyte loss due to hyperhomocysteinemia were significantly attenuated in gp91(-/-) mice. In in vitro studies of podocytes, homocysteine was found to increase gp91(phox) expression and O2(*)(-) generation, which was substantially inhibited by gp91(phox) siRNA. Functionally, homocysteine-induced decrease in vascular endothelial growth factor-A production was abolished by gp91(phox) siRNA or diphenyleneiodonium, a NADPH oxidase inhibitor. These results suggest that the functional integrity of NADPH oxidase is essential for hyperhomocysteinemia-induced podocyte injury and glomerulosclerosis.

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