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Mediators of Inflammation
Volume 2016 (2016), Article ID 1405924, 10 pages
Research Article

Irbesartan Ameliorates Diabetic Nephropathy by Suppressing the RANKL-RANK-NF-κB Pathway in Type 2 Diabetic db/db Mice

1Department of Nephrology, ZhuJiang Hospital, Southern Medical University, Guangzhou 510280, China
2Department of Gerontology, ZhuJiang Hospital, Southern Medical University, Guangzhou 510280, China
3Department of Emergency, ZhuJiang Hospital, Southern Medical University, Guangzhou 510280, China

Received 23 October 2015; Accepted 20 December 2015

Academic Editor: Hannes Neuwirt

Copyright © 2016 Xiao-Wen Chen et al. 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.


The receptor activator of NF-κB ligand (RANKL) and its receptor RANK are overexpressed in focal segmental glomerular sclerosis (FSGS), IgA nephropathy (IgAN), and membranous nephropathy (MN). However, the expression and the potential roles of RANKL and RANK in diabetic nephropathy (DN) remain unclear. Irbesartan (Irb) has beneficial effects against diabetes-induced renal damage, but its mechanisms are poorly understood. Our present study investigated the effects of Irb in DN and whether the renal protective effects of Irb are mediated by RANKL/RANK and the downstream NF-κB pathway in db/db mice. Our results showed that db/db mice revealed severe metabolic abnormalities, renal dysfunction, podocyte injury, and increased MCP-1; these symptoms were reversed by Irb. At the molecular level, RANKL and RANK were overexpressed in the kidneys of db/db mice and Irb downregulated RANKL and RANK and inhibited the downstream NF-κB pathway. Our study suggests that Irb can ameliorate DN by suppressing the RANKL-RANK-NF-κB pathway.