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Ren Fail. 1994;16(2):179-92.

Heat shock proteins and the kidney.

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Department of Medicine, University Hospital, Geneva, Switzerland.


The heat shock (HS) response is remarkably conserved during evolution and is evoked under many conditions of stress. There are a number of ways in which this ubiquitous response may be important for the understanding of renal pathophysiology. Ischemia, toxin exposure, and oxidative stress induce this response. Several models of hypertension are associated with increased susceptibility to environmental stress and increased accumulation of heat shock protein mRNA. HSP70 polymorphism has been demonstrated when comparing normotensive and hypertensive rats. Heat shock proteins may play a role in renal diseases through their important involvement in immunological processes. Several observations point to a role of the heat shock response in systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE). Autoantibodies against HSP70 and ubiquitin are found in many patients with this disease. Autoantibodies against ubiquitin and ubiquitinated histone H2A are localized to the kidney glomerular basement membrane of SLE patients with active disease. A better understanding of the HS response may thus provide important insight into renal pathophysiology and may suggest paradigms for therapeutic interventions.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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