Lipoprotein modulation of proteinuric renal injury

Lab Invest. 2019 Jul;99(8):1107-1116. doi: 10.1038/s41374-019-0253-6. Epub 2019 Apr 24.


High-density lipoprotein (HDL) and its main protein, apolipoprotein AI (apoAI), have established benefits in various cells, but whether these cytoprotective effects of HDL pertain to renal cells is unclear. We investigated the in vitro consequences of exposing damaged podocytes to normal apoAI, HDL, and apoAI mimetic (L-4F), and the in vivo effects of L-4F on kidney and atherosclerotic injury in a podocyte-specific injury model of proteinuria. In vitro, primary mouse podocytes were injured by puromycin aminonucleoside (PAN). Cellular viability, migration, production of reactive oxygen species (ROS), apoptosis, and the underlying signaling pathway were assessed. In vivo, we used a proteinuric model, Nphs1-hCD25 transgenic (NEP25+) mice, which express human CD25 on podocytes. Podocyte injury was induced by using immunotoxin (LMB2) and generated a proteinuric atherosclerosis model, NEP25+:apoE-/- mice, was generated by mating apoE-deficient (apoE-/-) mice with NEP25+ mice. Animals received L-4F or control vehicle. Renal function, podocyte injury, and atherosclerosis were assessed. PAN reduced podocyte viability, migration, and increased ROS production, all significantly lessened by apoAI, HDL, and L-4F. L-4F attenuated podocyte apoptosis and diminished PAN-induced inactivation of Janus family protein kinase-2/signal transducers and activators of transcription 3. In NEP25+ mice, L-4F significantly lessened overall proteinuria, and preserved podocyte expression of synaptopodin and cell density. Proteinuric NEP25+:apoE-/- mice had more atherosclerosis than non-proteinuric apoE-/- mice, and these lesions were significantly decreased by L-4F. Normal human apoAI, HDL, and apoAI mimetic protect against podocyte damage. ApoAI mimetic provides in vivo beneficial effects on podocytes that culminate in reduced albuminuria and atherosclerosis. The results suggest supplemental apoAI/apoAI mimetic may be a novel candidate to lessen podocyte damage and its complications.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, N.I.H., Intramural

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Apolipoprotein A-I / pharmacology*
  • Cells, Cultured
  • Humans
  • Interleukin-2 Receptor alpha Subunit / metabolism
  • Kidney Diseases / metabolism*
  • Kidney Diseases / pathology
  • Kidney Glomerulus / drug effects
  • Kidney Glomerulus / metabolism
  • Kidney Glomerulus / pathology
  • Lipoproteins, HDL / pharmacology
  • Mice
  • Mice, Transgenic
  • Podocytes* / drug effects
  • Podocytes* / metabolism
  • Protective Agents / pharmacology*
  • Proteinuria / metabolism*
  • Puromycin Aminonucleoside / adverse effects


  • Apolipoprotein A-I
  • IL2RA protein, human
  • Interleukin-2 Receptor alpha Subunit
  • Lipoproteins, HDL
  • Protective Agents
  • Puromycin Aminonucleoside