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Disease Markers
Volume 30 (2011), Issue 4, Pages 171-179
http://dx.doi.org/10.3233/DMA-2011-0766

Elevated Levels of miR-146a and miR-155 in Kidney Biopsy and Urine from Patients with IgA Nephropathy

Gang Wang,1,3 Bonnie Ching-Ha Kwan,1 Fernand Mac-Moune Lai,2 Kai-Ming Chow,1 Philip Kam-Tao Li,1 and Cheuk-Chun Szeto1

1Department of Medicine and Therapeutics, The Chinese University of Hong Kong, Shatin, Hong Kong, China
2Department of Anatomical and Cellular Pathology, Prince of Wales Hospital, The Chinese University of Hong Kong, Shatin, Hong Kong, China
3Division of Nephrology, Renmin Hospital of Wuhan University, China

Received 17 June 2011; Accepted 17 June 2011

Copyright © 2011 Hindawi Publishing Corporation. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Abstract

Background: Previous studies suggested miR-146a and miR-155 play important roles in innate and adaptive immune responses. We studied intra-renal and urinary levels of miR-146a and miR-155 in patients with immunoglobulin A nephropathy (IgAN).

Methods: Intra-renal and urinary levels of miR-146a and miR-155 are quantified in 43 patients with IgAN; the result was compared to 20 nephrectomy specimens and urine sediment of 13 healthy volunteers.

Results: The levels of intra-renal and urinary levels of miR-146a and miR-155 of IgAN are significantly higher than controls. Estimated glomerular filtration rate inversely correlates with intra-renal level of miR-146a and miR-155; proteinuria positively correlates with intra-renal level of miR-146a and miR-155, as well as urinary level of miR-146a and miR-155. Intra-renal level of miR-155 significantly correlates with tubulointerstitial scarring. Urinary level of miR-146a inversely correlates with urinary expression of interleukin (IL)-1β, IL-6 and tumor necrosis factor (TNF)-α and positively correlates with urinary expression of regulated upon activation, normal T-cell expressed, and secreted (RANTES). Urinary level of miR-155 inversely correlates with urinary expression of IL-1β and TNF-α and positively correlates with urinary expression of forkhead box P3 (FOXP3) and RANTES.

Conclusion: We conclude that intra-renal and urinary levels of miR-146a and miR-155 were significantly elevated in IgAN, and the degree of upregulation correlates with clinical and histological severity of the disease. Our results suggested miR-146a and miR-155 might play an important role in the pathophysiology of IgAN.