Podocyte Injury-Driven Lipid Peroxidation Accelerates the Infiltration of Glomerular Foam Cells in Focal Segmental Glomerulosclerosis

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Intracapillary foam cell infiltration with podocyte alterations is a characteristic pathology of focal segmental glomerulosclerosis (FSGS). We investigated the possible role of podocyte injury in glomerular macrophage and foam cell infiltration in a podocyte-selective injury model (NEP25 mice) and hypercholesterolemic model [low-density lipoprotein receptor deficiency (LDLR-/-) mice] with doxorubicin-induced nephropathy. Acute podocyte selective injury alone failed to induce glomerular macrophages in the NEP25 mice. However, in the doxorubicin-treated hypercholesterolemic LDLR-/- mice, glomerular macrophages/foam cells significantly increased and were accompanied by lipid deposition and the formation and ingestion of oxidized phospholipids (oxPLs). Glomerular macrophages significantly correlated with the amount of glomerular oxPL. The NEP25/LDLR-/- mice exhibited severe hypercholesterolemia, glomerular lipid deposition, and renal dysfunction. Imaging mass spectrometry revealed that a major component of oxidized low-density lipoprotein, lysophosphatidylcholine 16:0 and 18:0, was present only in the glomeruli of NEP25/LDLR-/- mice. Lysophosphatidylcholine 16:0 stimulated mesangial cells and macrophages, and lysophosphatidylcholine 18:0 stimulated glomerular endothelial cells to express adhesion molecules and chemokines, promoting macrophage adhesion and migration in vitro. In human FSGS, glomerular macrophage-derived foam cells contained oxPLs accompanied by the expression of chemokines in the tuft. In conclusion, glomerular lipid modification represents a novel pathology by podocyte injury, promoting FSGS. Podocyte injury-driven lysophosphatidylcholine de novo accelerated glomerular macrophage-derived foam cell infiltration via lysophosphatidylcholine-mediated expression of adhesion molecules and chemokines in glomerular resident cells.




Hara, S., Kobayashi, N., Sakamoto, K., Ueno, T., Manabe, S., Takashima, Y., … Nagata, M. (2015). Podocyte Injury-Driven Lipid Peroxidation Accelerates the Infiltration of Glomerular Foam Cells in Focal Segmental Glomerulosclerosis. American Journal of Pathology, 185(8), 2118–2131. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ajpath.2015.04.007

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