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      Effects of Hydroxychloroquine on Proteinuria in Immunoglobulin A Nephropathy

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          Background: Hydroxychloroquine (HCQ) is a well-known immunomodulator that is useful as in the treatment for lupus because of its inhibitory effect on toll-like receptors and cytokines, which are speculated to play a role in the pathogenesis of Immunoglobulin A (IgA) nephropathy (IgAN). However, there was only one study that investigated the effect of HCQ on proteinuria in patients with IgAN. Methods: Ninety patients with IgAN who received HCQ in addition to optimized dosage of renin-angiotensin-aldosterone system inhibitors (RAASi) were recruited for this study, and 90 matched historical controls who received RAASi alone were selected from our registry by the propensity score matching method. Their clinical data were compared at baseline and during follow-up till the termination of HCQ or addition of immunosuppressive agents. Results: The median baseline proteinuria level of the 90 patients who received HCQ was comparable with the RAASi-alone group (1.5 [1.2, 2.1] vs. 1.5 [1.2, 1.9] g/day, p = 0.74). At 6 months post-study initiation, the median proteinuria level in the HCQ group was lower than that in the RAASi-alone group (0.8 [0.7, 1.2] vs. 1.2 [0.8, 1.8] g/day, p = 0.02). The percentage by which proteinuria was reduced in the HCQ group was significantly higher than that in the RAASi-alone group (–43% [–57, –12] vs. –19% [–46, 17], p = 0.01). No serious adverse effects were documented during treatment with HCQ. Conclusion: The addition of HCQ to RAASi resulted in a significant and safe reduction in proteinuria in patients with IgAN.

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          Most cited references 14

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          Regulation of IgA production by naturally occurring TNF/iNOS-producing dendritic cells.

          Immunoglobulin-A has an irreplaceable role in the mucosal defence against infectious microbes. In human and mouse, IgA-producing plasma cells comprise approximately 20% of total plasma cells of peripheral lymphoid tissues, whereas more than 80% of plasma cells produce IgA in mucosa-associated lymphoid tissues (MALT). One of the most biologically important and long-standing questions in immunology is why this 'biased' IgA synthesis takes place in the MALT but not other lymphoid organs. Here we show that IgA class-switch recombination (CSR) is impaired in inducible-nitric-oxide-synthase-deficient (iNOS-/-; gene also called Nos2) mice. iNOS regulates the T-cell-dependent IgA CSR through expression of transforming growth factor-beta receptor, and the T-cell-independent IgA CSR through production of a proliferation-inducing ligand (APRIL, also called Tnfsf13) and a B-cell-activating factor of the tumour necrosis factor (TNF) family (BAFF, also called Tnfsf13b). Notably, iNOS is preferentially expressed in MALT dendritic cells in response to the recognition of commensal bacteria by toll-like receptor. Furthermore, adoptive transfer of iNOS+ dendritic cells rescues IgA production in iNOS-/- mice. Further analysis revealed that the MALT dendritic cells are a TNF-alpha/iNOS-producing dendritic-cell subset, originally identified in mice infected with Listeria monocytogenes. The presence of a naturally occurring TNF-alpha/iNOS-producing dendritic-cell subset may explain the predominance of IgA production in the MALT, critical for gut homeostasis.
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            The role of antimalarial agents in the treatment of SLE and lupus nephritis.

            Systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) is a multisystem autoimmune disease that affects various organs. Lupus nephritis is one of the most common, and most important, serious manifestations of SLE. Antimalarial agents are part of the immunomodulatory regimen used to treat patients with SLE; however, their role in the treatment of patients with lupus nephritis in particular is less well recognized, especially by nephrologists. Not all antimalarial agents have been used in the treatment of lupus; this Review will focus on studies using chloroquine and hydroxychloroquine. In addition, this Review will briefly describe the history of antimalarial drug use in patients with SLE, the theorized mechanisms of action of the agents chloroquine and hydroxychloroquine, their efficacy in patients with SLE and those with lupus nephritis, their use in pregnancy, and potential adverse effects. The Review will also cover the latest recommendations regarding monitoring for hydroxychloroquine-associated or chloroquine-associated retinopathy. Overall, antimalarial drugs have numerous beneficial effects in patients with SLE and lupus nephritis, and have a good safety profile.
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              Previous antimalarial therapy in patients diagnosed with lupus nephritis: influence on outcomes and survival.

              The aim of this study was to analyze the effect of exposure to antimalarial drugs at diagnosis of lupus nephritis on the outcome of the disease, especially renal failure, comorbid processes, and survival. We analyzed a cohort of 206 consecutive patients with biopsy-proven lupus nephritis. Renal biopsies were categorized according to the classification proposed by the ISN/RPS in 2003. Exposure to antimalarial drugs (chloroquine and hydroxychloroquine) was defined as the use of these drugs before the diagnosis of lupus nephritis independent of dose and duration. Fifty-six (27%) patients had received antimalarials before the diagnosis of lupus nephritis. During the follow-up, these patients had a lower frequency of creatinine values >4 mg/dL (2% vs 11%, P = 0.029) and end-stage renal failure (2% vs 11%, P = 0.044) in comparison with those never treated with antimalarials. Patients exposed to antimalarials also had a lower frequency of hypertension (32% vs 50%, P = 0.027), infections (11% vs 29%, P = 0.006), and thrombotic events (5% vs 17%, P = 0.039). Twenty patients (10%) died during the study period. Patients exposed to antimalarials had a lower mortality rate at the end of the follow-up (2% vs 13% for those not exposed to antimalarials, P = 0.029). Multivariate analysis identified thrombosis and infections as statistically significant independent variables. Kaplan-Meier plots showed a lower rate of end-stage renal failure (log rank = 0.04) in patients exposed to antimalarials. In conclusion, exposure to antimalarials before the diagnosis of lupus nephritis was negatively associated with the development of renal failure, hypertension, thrombosis and infection, and with a better survival rate at the end of the follow-up. This, together with other published data, suggests that antimalarials should be considered a mandatory therapeutic option in all patients diagnosed with systemic lupus erythematosus.

                Author and article information

                Am J Nephrol
                American Journal of Nephrology
                S. Karger AG
                April 2018
                02 March 2018
                : 47
                : 3
                : 145-152
                Renal Division, Peking University First Hospital, Institute of Nephrology, Peking University, Key Laboratory of Renal Disease, Ministry of Health of China, Beijing, China
                Author notes
                *Li-Jun Liu, MD, Renal Division, Peking University First Hospital, Peking University Institute of Nephrology, Key Laboratory of Renal Disease, Ministry of Health of China, Beijing 100034 (PR China), E-Mail
                487330 Am J Nephrol 2018;47:145–152
                © 2018 S. Karger AG, Basel

                Copyright: All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be translated into other languages, reproduced or utilized in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording, microcopying, or by any information storage and retrieval system, without permission in writing from the publisher. Drug Dosage: The authors and the publisher have exerted every effort to ensure that drug selection and dosage set forth in this text are in accord with current recommendations and practice at the time of publication. However, in view of ongoing research, changes in government regulations, and the constant flow of information relating to drug therapy and drug reactions, the reader is urged to check the package insert for each drug for any changes in indications and dosage and for added warnings and precautions. This is particularly important when the recommended agent is a new and/or infrequently employed drug. Disclaimer: The statements, opinions and data contained in this publication are solely those of the individual authors and contributors and not of the publishers and the editor(s). The appearance of advertisements or/and product references in the publication is not a warranty, endorsement, or approval of the products or services advertised or of their effectiveness, quality or safety. The publisher and the editor(s) disclaim responsibility for any injury to persons or property resulting from any ideas, methods, instructions or products referred to in the content or advertisements.

                Page count
                Figures: 4, Tables: 2, Pages: 8
                Original Report: Patient-Oriented, Translational Research

                Cardiovascular Medicine, Nephrology

                Proteinuria, Hydroxychloroquine, Immunoglobulin A nephropathy


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