Protein level expression of Toll-like receptors 2, 4 and 9 in renal disease

Nephrol Dial Transplant. 2011 Apr;26(4):1413-6. doi: 10.1093/ndt/gfq752. Epub 2011 Jan 10.


Background: Toll-like receptors (TLR) recognize a variety of ligands, including pathogen-associated molecular patterns and link innate and adaptive immunity. Individual receptors can be up-regulated during infection and inflammation. We examined the expression of selected TLRs at the protein level in various types of renal disease.

Methods: Frozen sections of renal biopsies were stained with monoclonal antibodies to TLR-2, -4 and -9.

Results: Up-regulation of the three TLRs studied was seen, although the extent was modest. TLR-2- and -4-positive cells belonged to the population of infiltrating inflammatory cells; only in the case of TLR-9 were intrinsic glomerular cells positive in polyoma virus infection and haemolytic uraemic syndrome (HUS).

Conclusions: Evidence for the involvement of the three TLRs tested in a variety of human renal diseases was found. These findings add to our understanding of the role of the innate immune system in kidney disease.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Biomarkers / metabolism*
  • Humans
  • Kidney / metabolism
  • Kidney Diseases / metabolism*
  • Kidney Diseases / pathology
  • Prognosis
  • Toll-Like Receptor 2 / metabolism*
  • Toll-Like Receptor 4 / metabolism*
  • Toll-Like Receptor 9 / metabolism*


  • Biomarkers
  • TLR2 protein, human
  • TLR4 protein, human
  • TLR9 protein, human
  • Toll-Like Receptor 2
  • Toll-Like Receptor 4
  • Toll-Like Receptor 9