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Am J Nephrol. 2015;41(4-5):345-53. doi: 10.1159/000431331. Epub 2015 Jun 13.

Renal phospholipase A2 receptor in hepatitis B virus-associated membranous nephropathy.

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Division of Nephrology, Huashan Hospital, Fudan University, Shanghai, China.



This study examined the expression of renal phospholipase A2 receptor (PLA2R) in idiopathic and secondary membranous nephropathy (MN).


Patients with biopsy-proven MN and non-MN were enrolled. Renal PLA2R was examined using an anti-PLA2R antibody (anti-PLA2R-Ab), and circulating PLA2R-Ab was detected by indirect immunofluorescence.


Renal PLA2R was detected along the capillary loop in 84% patients with idiopathic MN but not in those with any other primary glomerulonephritis. Only 1 of 38 patients with class V lupus nephritis showed renal PLA2R positive. In hepatitis B virus-associated MN (HBV-MN), 64% showed renal PLA2R positive, and PLA2R overlapped with HBsAg along the capillary loop. In addition, renal PLA2R positivity was closely associated with serum PLA2R-Ab. Renal PLA2R positive was present in all the patients with serum PLA2R-Ab positive and in 53% of patients with serum PLA2R-Ab negative. However, in patients with renal PLA2R negative, serum PLA2R-Ab was all negative.


Renal biopsy PLA2R positivity was common in idiopathic MN and HBV-MN but rare in lupus-associated MN, and it was closely associated with serum PLA2R-Ab production. Further studies examining the association between PLA2R and HBV-MN may shed light on the mechanism of idiopathic MN or HBV-MN. © 2015 S. Karger AG, Basel.

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