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Histochem J. 1994 Sep;26(9):734-53.

Immunolocalization of antioxidant enzymes in adult hamster kidney.

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Pathology and Laboratory Medicine Service, William S. Middleton Memorial Veterans Hospital, Madison, WI 53705.


Immunoperoxidase and immunogold techniques were used to localize the following antioxidant enzyme systems in the adult hamster kidney at the light and ultrastructural levels: superoxide dismutases, catalases, peroxidases and glutathione S-transferases. Each cell type in the kidney showed specific patterns of labelling of these enzymes. For example, proximal and distal tubular and transitional epithelial cells showed significant staining for all of these enzymes, while glomerular cells and cells of the thin loop of Henle did not show significant staining at the light microscope level. In addition, high levels of glutathione peroxidase were found in smooth muscle cells of renal arteries. At the ultrastructural level, each enzyme was found in a specific subcellular location. Manganese superoxide dismutase was found in mitochondria, catalase was localized in peroxisomes, while copper, zinc superoxide dismutase and glutathione S-transferase (liver and placental forms) were found in both the nucleus and cytoplasm. Glutathione peroxidase was found to have a broad intracellular distribution, with localization in mitochondria, peroxisomes, nucleus, and cytoplasm. Microvilli of tubular cells were labelled by antibodies to catalase, copper, zinc superoxide dismutase, glutathione peroxidase, and glutathione S-transferases. Cell types that were negative by light microscopy immunoperoxidase studies showed definite labelling with immunogold post-embedding ultrastructural techniques (glomerular cells and cells of the loop of Henle), demonstrating the greater sensitivity of the latter technique. These observations demonstrate that there are large variations in the levels of antioxidant enzymes in different cell types, and that even within a distinct cell type, the levels of these enzymes vary in different subcellular locations. Our results demonstrate for the first time the overall antioxidant enzyme status of individual kidney cell types, thereby explaining why different cell types have differing susceptibilities to oxidant stress. Possible physiological and pathological consequences of these findings are discussed.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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