Ultrastructural changes in IgA nephropathy in relation to histologic and clinical data

Kidney Int. 1989 Mar;35(3):880-6. doi: 10.1038/ki.1989.68.


In order to evaluate the ultrastructural changes in IgA nephropathy (IgAN) and their relationship with light microscopic and clinical features, renal biopsy material from 239 Korean patients with IgAN was studied by light, electron and immunofluorescence microscopy. Forty-one were children and 198 were adults. Modified classification of Meadow et al (1972) for Henoch-Schönlein nephritis was used for the histologic grading of glomerular lesions. Forty-three adults (18%) exhibited histologic grades IV and V lesions in association with more severe clinical findings, when compared to the remaining 196 patients with histologic grades I to III. A significant difference was noted between children and adults in the severity of the glomerular lesions (P less than 0.01). Mesangial deposits were observed in all (100%), subendothelial deposits in 37%, subepithelial deposits in 18%, abnormalities in glomerular basement membrane (GBM) in 20%, mesangiolysis in 44%, and mesangial interposition in 25%. The frequency of GBM abnormalities and subepithelial deposits in children was significantly higher than that seen in adults (P less than 0.01). The abnormalities of GBM were not related to more severe clinical manifestations when our analysis was restricted to grade III histologic lesions. All of the above ultrastructural changes except for mesangial deposits were associated with more severe histologic grading in adults (P less than 0.025 or P less than 0.01). Yet a correlation between these ultrastructural changes and histologic grading could not be studied in children due to confinement of their histology within a more benign group. These results suggest that the five ultrastructural parameters described here appear to bear important prognostic value in adults with IgAN.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS)

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Basement Membrane / ultrastructure
  • Biopsy
  • Child
  • Female
  • Fluorescent Antibody Technique
  • Glomerulonephritis, IGA / pathology*
  • Humans
  • Kidney / ultrastructure*
  • Kidney Glomerulus / ultrastructure
  • Male
  • Microscopy, Electron