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Nephrol Dial Transplant. 2013 Jan;28(1):137-46. doi: 10.1093/ndt/gfs379. Epub 2012 Sep 17.

Low- and high-molecular-weight urinary proteins as predictors of response to rituximab in patients with membranous nephropathy: a prospective study.

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1
Division of Nephrology and Hypertension, Mayo Clinic College of Medicine, Rochester, MN, USA.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Selective urinary biomarkers have been considered superior to total proteinuria in predicting response to treatment and outcome in patients with membranous nephropathy (MN).

METHODS:

We prospectively tested whether urinary (U) excretion of retinol-binding protein (RBP), α1-microglobulin (α1M), albumin, immunoglobulin IgG and IgM and/or anti-phospholipase 2 receptor (PLA(2)R) levels could predict response to rituximab (RTX) therapy better than standard measures in MN. We also correlated changes in antibodies to PLA(2)R with these urinary biomarkers.

RESULTS:

Twenty patients with MN and proteinuria (P) >5 g/24 h received RTX (375 mg/m(2) × 4) and at 12 months, 1 patient was in complete remission (CR), 9 were in partial remission (PR), 5 had a limited response (LR) and 4 were non-responders (NR). At 24 months, CR occurred in 4, PR in 12, LR in 1, NR in 2 and 1 patient relapsed. By simple linear regression analysis, UIgG at baseline (mg/24 h) was a significant predictor of change in proteinuria at 12 months (Δ urinary protein) (P = 0.04). In addition, fractional excretion (FE) of IgG, urinary alpha 1 microglobulin (Uα1M) (mg/24 h) and URBP (μg/24 h) were also predictors of response (P = 0.05, 0.04, and 0.03, respectively). On the other hand, UIgM, FEIgM, albumin and FE albumin did not predict response (P = 0.10, 0.27, 0.22 and 0.20, respectively). However, when results were analyzed in relation to proteinuria at 24 months, none of the U markers that predicted response at 12 m could predict response at 24 m (P = 0.55, 0.42, 0.29 and 0.20). Decline in anti-PLA(2)R levels was associated with and often preceded urinary biomarker response but positivity at baseline was not a predictor of proteinuria response.

CONCLUSIONS:

The results suggest that in patients with MN, quantification of low-, medium- and high-molecular-weight urinary proteins may be associated with rate of response to RTX, but do not correlate with longer term outcomes.

PMID:
22987142
PMCID:
PMC3616763
DOI:
10.1093/ndt/gfs379
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article
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