Membrana basale sottile: non sempre una diagnosi benigna

Translated title of the contribution: Thin basement membrane and Alport syndrome

L. Massella, F. Emma, A. Onetti Muda

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Alport Syndrome (AS) is an inherited disorder of the glomerular basement membrane (GBM) transmitted as an X-linked dominant form in approximately 80% of patients. This X-linked form is caused by mutations in the collagen type IV alfa 5 gene (COL4A5) located on chromosome X; in the remainder of the cases, the autosomal, mostly recessive form, results from mutations in the collagen type IV alfa 3 gene (COL4A3) or alfa 4 gene (COL4A4) located on the 2q. Diagnostic lesions can be observed by electron microscopy (EM) and are characterized by thinning, thickening and/or splitting of the GBM. Isolated thinning of the GBM is usually associated with isolated microhematuria, a non progressive condition which has often a familial trait. Skin biopsy has also recently emerged to be a valuable alternative for the diagnosis of X-linked AS, because the alfa 5 (COL4A5) chain is also expressed in the epidermal basement membrane. A reliable diagnosis can often be achieved through combined renal and cutaneous immunohistochemical analysis, even in patients with limited clinical signs or atypical histological findings, and/or without suggestive family history. The present case report is an example of such diagnostic dilemma, where these techniques allowed to make a diagnosis despite contradictive clinical and histological features in contrast with a positive family history of renal disease.

Translated title of the contributionThin basement membrane and Alport syndrome
Original languageItalian
Pages (from-to)519-523
Number of pages5
JournalGiornale italiano di nefrologia : organo ufficiale della Società italiana di nefrologia
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - Sep 1 2006

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)


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