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      Eosinophilia and Kidney Disease: More than Just an Incidental Finding?

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          Peripheral blood eosinophilia (PBE), defined as 500 eosinophils or above per microliter (µL) blood, is a condition that is not uncommon but often neglected in the management of patients with chronic kidney disease (CKD), acute kidney injury (AKI), or patients on renal replacement therapy (RRT). The nature of PBE in the context of kidney diseases is predominantly secondary or reactive and has to be distinguished from primary eosinophilic disorders. Nonetheless, the finding of persistent PBE can be a useful clue for the differential diagnosis of underdiagnosed entities and overlapping syndromes, such as eosinophilic granulomatosis with polyangiitis (EGPA), IgG4-related disease (IgG4-RD), acute interstitial nephritis (AIN), or the hypereosinophilic syndrome (HES). For patients on RRT, PBE may be an indicator for bio-incompatibility of the dialysis material, acute allograft rejection, or Strongyloides hyperinfection. In a subset of patients with EGPA, eosinophils might even be the driving force in disease pathogenesis. This improved understanding is already being used to facilitate novel therapeutic options. Mepolizumab has been licensed for the management of EGPA and is applied with the aim to abrogate the underlying immunologic process by blocking interleukin-5. The current article provides an overview of different renal pathologies that are associated with PBE. Further scientific effort is required to understand the exact role and function of eosinophils in these disorders which may pave the way to improved interdisciplinary management of such patients.

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          Severe adverse cutaneous reactions to drugs.

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            A new clinicopathological entity of IgG4-related autoimmune disease.

            Autoimmune pancreatitis (AIP) is occasionally associated with other autoimmune diseases. To investigate the pathophysiology of AIP, we immunohistochemically examined the pancreas and other organs in eight patients with AIP, and in controls, using anti-CD4-T and CD8-T cell subsets, as well as IgG4 antibodies. In AIP patients, severe or moderate infiltration of IgG4-positive plasma cells associated with CD4- or CD8-positive T lymphocytes was detected in the peripancreatic tissue (6/6), bile duct (8/8), gallbladder (8/8), portal area of the liver (3/3), gastric mucosa (5/7), colonic mucosa (2/2), salivary glands (1/2), lymph nodes (6/6), and bone marrow (2/2), as well as in the pancreas (8/8). There were few IgG4-positive plasma cells at the same sites in controls. These results suggest that AIP is not simply pancreatitis but that it is a pancreatic lesion involved in IgG4-related systemic disease with extensive organ involvement. We propose a new clinicopathological entity, of a systemic IgG4-related autoimmune disease in which AIP and its associated diseases might be involved. Autoimmune pancreatitis (AIP) is occasionally associated with other autoimmune diseases.
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              Immunoglobulin G4: an odd antibody.

              Despite its well-known association with IgE-mediated allergy, IgG4 antibodies still have several poorly understood characteristics. IgG4 is a very dynamic antibody: the antibody is involved in a continuous process of half-molecules (i.e. a heavy and attached light-chain) exchange. This process, also referred to as 'Fab-arm exchange', results usually in asymmetric antibodies with two different antigen-combining sites. While these antibodies are hetero- bivalent, they will behave as monovalent antibodies in most situations. Another aspect of IgG4, still poorly understood, is its tendency to mimic IgG rheumatoid factor (RF) activity by interacting with IgG on a solid support. In contrast to conventional RF, which binds via its variable domains, the activity of IgG4 is located in its constant domains. This is potentially a source of false positives in IgG4 antibody assay results. Because regulation of IgG4 production is dependent on help by T-helper type 2 (Th2) cells, the IgG4 response is largely restricted to non-microbial antigens. This Th2-dependency associates the IgG4 and IgE responses. Another typical feature in the immune regulation of IgG4 is its tendency to appear only after prolonged immunization. In the context of IgE-mediated allergy, the appearance of IgG4 antibodies is usually associated with a decrease in symptoms. This is likely to be due, at least in part, to an allergen-blocking effect at the mast cell level and/or at the level of the antigen-presenting cell (preventing IgE-facilitated activation of T cells). In addition, the favourable association reflects the enhanced production of IL-10 and other anti-inflammatory cytokines, which drive the production of IgG4. While in general, IgG4 is being associated with non-activating characteristics, in some situations IgG4 antibodies have an association with pathology. Two striking examples are pemphigoid diseases and sclerosing diseases such as autoimmune pancreatitis. The mechanistic basis for the association of IgG4 with these diseases is still enigmatic. However, the association with sclerosing diseases may reflect an excessive production of anti-inflammatory cytokines triggering an overwhelming expansion of IgG4-producing plasma cells. The bottom line for allergy diagnosis: IgG4 by itself is unlikely to be a cause of allergic symptoms. In general, the presence of allergen-specific IgG4 indicates that anti-inflammatory, tolerance-inducing mechanisms have been activated. The existence of the IgG4 subclass, its up-regulation by anti-inflammatory factors and its own anti-inflammatory characteristics may help the immune system to dampen inappropriate inflammatory reactions.

                Author and article information

                J Clin Med
                J Clin Med
                Journal of Clinical Medicine
                08 December 2018
                December 2018
                : 7
                : 12
                [1 ]Department of Internal Medicine IV (Nephrology and Hypertension), Medical University Innsbruck, 6020 Innsbruck, Austria; gert.mayer@ (G.M.); andreas.kronbichler@ (A.K.)
                [2 ]Department of Pediatrics, Yonsei University College of Medicine, Seoul 03722, Korea; shinji@
                [3 ]Department of Pediatric Nephrology, Severance Children’s Hospital, Seoul 03722, Korea
                [4 ]Institute of Kidney Disease Research, Yonsei University College of Medicine, Seoul 03722, Korea
                [5 ]Division of Cardiology, Emory University School of Medicine, Atlanta, GA 30322, USA
                Author notes
                [* ]Correspondence: philipp.gauckler@ ; Tel.: +43-512-504-83602; Fax: +43-512-504-25851
                © 2018 by the authors.

                Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland. This article is an open access article distributed under the terms and conditions of the Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY) license (



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