A glimpse of the pathogenetic mechanisms of Wnt/β-catenin signaling in diabetic nephropathy

Biomed Res Int. 2013;2013:987064. doi: 10.1155/2013/987064. Epub 2013 Dec 25.

Abstract

The Wnt family of proteins belongs to a group of secreted lipid-modified glycoproteins with highly conserved cysteine residues. Prior results indicate that Wnt/β-catenin signaling plays a prominent role in cell differentiation, adhesion, survival, and apoptosis and is involved in organ development, tumorigenesis, and tissue fibrosis, among other functions. Accumulating evidence has suggested that Wnt/β-catenin exhibits a pivotal function in the progression of diabetic nephropathy (DN). In this review, we focused on discussing the dual role of Wnt/β-catenin in apoptosis and epithelial mesenchymal transition (EMT) formation of mesangial cells. Moreover, we also elucidated the effect of Wnt/β-catenin in podocyte dysfunction, tubular EMT formation, and renal fibrosis under DN conditions. In addition, the molecular mechanisms involved in this process are introduced. This information provides a novel molecular target of Wnt/β-catenin for the protection of kidney damage and in delay of the progression of DN.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Diabetic Nephropathies / genetics
  • Diabetic Nephropathies / metabolism*
  • Diabetic Nephropathies / pathology
  • Epithelial-Mesenchymal Transition / genetics
  • Humans
  • Kidney / metabolism
  • Kidney / pathology
  • Mesangial Cells / metabolism
  • Mesangial Cells / pathology*
  • Wnt Signaling Pathway / genetics*
  • beta Catenin / genetics
  • beta Catenin / metabolism*

Substances

  • beta Catenin