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      Can Kidney Regeneration Be Visualized

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          Background: Various cell types, including podocytes and parietal epithelial cells, play important roles in the development and progression of glomerular kidney diseases, albuminuria, and glomerulosclerosis. Besides their role in renal pathologies, glomerular cells have emerging new functions in endogenous repair mechanisms. A better understanding of the dynamics of the glomerular environment and cellular composition in an intact living kidney is critically important for the development of new regenerative therapeutic strategies for kidney diseases. However, progress in this field has been hampered by the lack of in vivo research tools. Summary: This review summarizes the current state-of-the-art in the application of the unique intravital imaging technology of multiphoton fluorescence microscopy for the dynamic visualization of glomerular structure and function over time in the intact, living kidney. Recently, this imaging approach in combination with transgenic mouse models allowed tracking of the fate of individual glomerular cells in vivo over several days and depicted the highly dynamic nature of the glomerular environment, particularly in disease conditions. Key Messages: The technology is ready and available for future intravital imaging studies investigating new glomerular regenerative approaches in animal models.

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          Most cited references 26

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          Regeneration of glomerular podocytes by human renal progenitors.

          Depletion of podocytes, common to glomerular diseases in general, plays a role in the pathogenesis of glomerulosclerosis. Whether podocyte injury in adulthood can be repaired has not been established. Here, we demonstrate that in the adult human kidney, CD133+CD24+ cells consist of a hierarchical population of progenitors that are arranged in a precise sequence within Bowman's capsule and exhibit heterogeneous potential for differentiation and regeneration. Cells localized to the urinary pole that expressed CD133 and CD24, but not podocyte markers (CD133+CD24+PDX- cells), could regenerate both tubular cells and podocytes. In contrast, cells localized between the urinary pole and vascular pole that expressed both progenitor and podocytes markers (CD133+CD24+PDX+) could regenerate only podocytes. Finally, cells localized to the vascular pole did not exhibit progenitor markers, but displayed phenotypic features of differentiated podocytes (CD133-CD24-PDX+ cells). Injection of CD133+CD24+PDX- cells, but not CD133+CD24+PDX+ or CD133-CD24- cells, into mice with adriamycin-induced nephropathy reduced proteinuria and improved chronic glomerular damage, suggesting that CD133+CD24+PDX- cells could potentially treat glomerular disorders characterized by podocyte injury, proteinuria, and progressive glomerulosclerosis.
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            Progression of glomerular diseases: is the podocyte the culprit?

             K Lemley,  N Gretz,  W Kriz (1998)
            The stereotyped development of the glomerular lesions in many animal models and human forms of progressive renal disease suggests that there are common mechanisms of disease progression. We propose the outline of such a mechanism based on following aspects: (1) The glomerulus is a complex structure, the stability of which depends on the cooperative function of the basement membrane, mesangial cells and podocytes, counteracting the distending forces originating from the high glomerular hydrostatic pressures. Failure of this system leads to quite uniform architectural lesions. (2) There is strong evidence that the podocyte is incapable of regenerative replication post-natally; when podocytes are lost for any reason they cannot be replaced by new cells. Loss of podocytes may therefore lead to areas of "bare" GBM. which represent potential starting points for irreversible glomerular injury. (3) Attachment of parietal epithelial cells to bare GBM invariably occurs when bare GBM coexists with architectural lesions, leading to the formation of a tuft adhesion to Bowman's capsule, the first "committed" lesion progressing to segmental sclerosis. (4) Within an adhesion the tuft merges with the interstitium, allowing filtration from perfused capillaries inside the adhesion towards the interstitium. The relevance of such filtration is as yet unclear but may play a considerable role in progression to global sclerosis and interstitial fibrosis.
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              Recruitment of podocytes from glomerular parietal epithelial cells.

              Loss of a critical number of podocytes from the glomerular tuft leads to glomerulosclerosis. Even in health, some podocytes are lost into the urine. Because podocytes themselves cannot regenerate, we postulated that glomerular parietal epithelial cells (PECs), which proliferate throughout life and adjoin podocytes, may migrate to the glomerular tuft and differentiate into podocytes. Here, we describe transitional cells at the glomerular vascular stalk that exhibit features of both PECs and podocytes. Metabolic labeling in juvenile rats suggested that PECs migrate to become podocytes. To prove this, we generated triple-transgenic mice that allowed specific and irreversible labeling of PECs upon administration of doxycycline. PECs were followed in juvenile mice beginning from either postnatal day 5 or after nephrogenesis had ceased at postnatal day 10. In both cases, the number of genetically labeled cells increased over time. All genetically labeled cells coexpressed podocyte marker proteins. In conclusion, we demonstrate for the first time recruitment of podocytes from PECs in juvenile mice. Unraveling the mechanisms of PEC recruitment onto the glomerular tuft may lead to novel therapeutic approaches to renal injury.

                Author and article information

                Nephron Exp Nephrol
                Cardiorenal Medicine
                S. Karger AG
                May 2014
                19 May 2014
                : 126
                : 2
                : 86-90
                Departments of aPhysiology and Biophysics and bMedicine, Zilkha Neurogenetic Institute, University of Southern California, Los Angeles, Calif., USA; cDepartment II of Internal Medicine and Center for Molecular Medicine Cologne, University of Cologne, Cologne, Germany
                Author notes
                *J. Peti-Peterdi, MD, PhD, Zilkha Neurogenetic Institute, ZNI335, University of Southern California, 1501 San Pablo Street, Los Angeles, CA 90033 (USA), E-Mail
                360673 PMC4118422 Nephron Exp Nephrol 2014;126:86-90
                © 2014 S. Karger AG, Basel

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                Page count
                Figures: 2, Pages: 5
                Further Section

                Cardiovascular Medicine, Nephrology

                Multiphoton fluorescence microscopy, Imaging, Regeneration


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