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Kidney Int. 1998 Sep;54(3):848-56.

Identification of oxidized low density lipoprotein in human renal biopsies.

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Department of Pathology, Seoul National University College of Medicine, Korea.



Intraglomerular lipid deposition is frequently observed in routine renal biopsies, and it has been suggested that lipid peroxidation of low density lipoprotein (LDL) may be implicated in the pathogenesis of progressive glomerulosclerosis. We have examined whether oxidized LDL (Ox-LDL) is present in the glomeruli of patients with renal disease and whether intrinsic human glomerular cells express NADPH-oxidase (a superoxide-generating enzyme found in professional phagocytes).


Immunocytochemical study was performed on 939 renal biopsy specimens, using monoclonal antibodies (mAbs) OL-10, 48 and 449, and polyclonal antibody against human apolipoprotein (apo) B. Mouse mAb OL-10 recognizes malondialdehyde (MDA)-modified peptide epitope, and mAbs 48 and 449 react with alpha and beta subunits of cytochrome b558, an essential component of NADPH-oxidase.


Sixty-two (6.6%) of the 939 patients with renal disease exhibited a staining for MDA-altered protein or Ox-LDL in the glomeruli, mainly in the sclerotic segments or mesangial areas. Group 1 patients with heavy Ox-LDL deposition mainly in the sclerotic segments showed a higher frequency of renal insufficiency and heavy proteinuria and a greater degree of glomerulosclerosis, compared to those in group 2 with mesangial Ox-LDL staining. The distribution of MDA protein epitopes, in general, paralleled the deposition of apo B epitopes. Immunoelectron microscopy of ultrathin frozen sections showed the presence of immunogold particles for mAbs 48 and 449 in the cytoplasm of resident glomerular cells of both normal and diseased kidneys. When immunoblotted with mAb OL-10, one band from the IgA nephropathy and focal segmental glomerulosclerosis groups at approximately 260 kD was labeled, whereas immunostaining of normal control samples revealed no staining.


These results indicate that Ox-LDL is present mainly in the lesions of glomerulosclerosis and mesangial areas in human renal biopsies. They also suggest that patients with heavy Ox-LDL accumulation in the sclerotic segments of glomeruli have more advanced renal disease than those with mesangial Ox-LDL and that resident glomerular cells generate cytochrome b558, the potential of which may not suffice to induce peroxidation of LDL in the diseased glomeruli.

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