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      Podocytes in HIV-Associated Nephropathy

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          HIV-associated nephropathy (HIVAN) is the leading cause of end-stage renal failure in HIV-1 seropositive patients. The pathologic findings include collapsing focal segmental glomerulosclerosis with proliferation of epithelial cells in Bowman’s space. Anatomically, these cells correspond to podocytes and exhibit a unique phenotype with loss of many differentiation markers including synaptopodin and dysregulation of the cell cycle markers consistent with proliferation. Podocyte dysfunction appears to be a direct result of HIV-1 protein expression, specifically Nef and Vpr as well as specific host factors that have yet to be elucidated. The mechanism by which Nef induces podocyte proliferation and dedifferentiation has been traced to its ability to activate several signaling pathways including Src-Stat3 and ras-raf-MAPK1, 2. Activation of the cAMP/PKA pathway with all-trans-retinoic acid appears to modulate these changes and returns podocytes to a differentiated, nonproliferating phenotype.

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          Most cited references 35

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          Importance of the nef gene for maintenance of high virus loads and for development of AIDS.

          When rhesus monkeys were infected with a form of cloned SIVmac239 having a premature stop signal at the 93rd codon of nef, revertants with a coding codon at this position quickly and universally came to predominate in the infected animals. This suggests that there are strong selective forces for open functional forms of nef in vivo. Although deletion of nef sequences had no detectable effect on virus replication in cultured cells, deletion of nef sequences dramatically altered the properties of virus in infected rhesus monkeys. Our results indicate that nef is required for maintaining high virus loads during the course of persistent infection in vivo and for full pathologic potential. Thus, nef should become a target for antiviral drug development. Furthermore, the properties of virus with a deletion in nef suggest a means for making live-attenuated strains of virus for experimental vaccine testing.
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            The hunting of the Src.

            The non-receptor tyrosine kinase Src is important for many aspects of cell physiology. The viral src gene was the first retroviral oncogene to be identified, and its cellular counterpart was the first proto-oncogene to be discovered in the vertebrate genome. Src has been important, not only as an object of study in itself, but also as an entry point into the molecular genetics of cancer.
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              Associated focal and segmental glomerulosclerosis in the acquired immunodeficiency syndrome.

              Of the 92 patients with the acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS) who were seen at our institution over a two-year period, 9 acquired the nephrotic syndrome (urinary protein greater than 3.5 g per 24 hours) and 2 had azotemia with lesser amounts of urinary protein. Five of these 11 patients had a history of intravenous-heroin addiction, but in the remaining six, there were no known predisposing factors for nephropathy. In nine patients (including the six non-addicts) the course of renal disease was marked by rapid progression to severe uremia. Renal tissue examined by biopsy in seven patients and at autopsy in three revealed focal and segmental glomerulosclerosis with intraglomerular deposition of IgM and C3. In the 11th patient, renal biopsy revealed an increase in mesangial matrix and cells, with deposition of IgG and C3 consistent with a mild immune-complex glomerulonephritis, and severe interstitial nephritis. We conclude that focal and segmental glomerulosclerosis may be associated with AIDS and suggest that rapid deterioration to uremia may characterize this renal disease.

                Author and article information

                Nephron Clin Pract
                Nephron Clinical Practice
                S. Karger AG
                June 2007
                06 June 2007
                : 106
                : 2
                : c67-c71
                Division of Nephrology, Department of Medicine, Mount Sinai School of Medicine, New York, N.Y., USA
                101800 Nephron Clin Pract 2007;106:c67–c71
                © 2007 S. Karger AG, Basel

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                References: 47, Pages: 1


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