Immunohistochemical distribution of endothelin in biopsies of pediatric nephrotic syndrome

L. Murer, G. Zacchello, G. Basso, A. Scarpa, G. Montini, M. L. Chiozza, F. Zacchello

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In a retrospective, double-blind study, we analyzed, utilizing an immunohistochemical technique, the distribution of Endothelin (Et) in 20 renal biopsies of 17 children with nephrotic syndrome (NS): 9 cases of steroid-responsive and 8 of steroid-resistant minimal-change disease (MCD) and 3 cases of focal segmental glomerulosclerosis (FSGS). Thirteen out of 20 biopsies (9/9 steroid-responsive MCD and 4/8 steroid-resistant MCD) showed a weak positivity of the vascular endothelial cells, as the normal renal tissue samples obtained from tumor nephrectomies. Seven out of 20 biopsies, all steroid-resistant NS, showed a marked positivity of the vascular endothelium and of the tubules and/or interstitial cells. In 4 of these 7 cases (1 MCD, 3 FSGS) a positivity of glomeruli was also revealed. The positivity of vascular endothelium seems to confirm its central role in Et production. The marked immunoreactivity detected in the endothelial cells and other renal components reveals a local increase in Et in some steroid-resistant MCD and, particularly, in FSGS. These preliminary observations suggest that Et may participate (cause or epiphenomon) in the mechanisms underlying the development of glomerulosclerosis and the progression of renal damage.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)157-161
Number of pages5
JournalAmerican Journal of Nephrology
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 1994


  • Children
  • Endothelin
  • Nephrotic syndrome
  • Renal biopsies

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Nephrology

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