Role of interleukin-6 in the progression of mesangial proliferative glomerulonephritis

Kidney Int Suppl. 1993 Jan;39:S71-5.


Mesangial proliferative glomerulonephritis (mesPGN) is histologically characterized by proliferation of mesangial cells (MC), suggesting the involvement of a growth factor for MC in the pathogenesis of mesPGN. We have previously shown that interleukin-6 (IL-6) induces proliferation of cultured rat mesangial cells, and urine samples from patients with IgA nephropathy contain high level of IL-6 activity. We have also demonstrated that transgenic mice carrying a human IL-6 genomic gene showed severe mesangial proliferation and matrix enlargement. Urinary samples of patients with lupus nephritis as well as IgA nephropathy contain significant IL-6 activity. Over a ten month follow-up, a positive correlation between the urinary IL-6 and pathological score was observed. Hence, measurement of urinary IL-6 can be used as a good indicator for monitoring IgA nephropathy and lupus nephritis. Using RT-PCR methods, IL-6 mRNA was detected in the glomeruli of renal biopsy specimens obtained from patients with IgA nephropathy and lupus nephritis.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Glomerulonephritis, IGA / etiology
  • Glomerulonephritis, IGA / genetics
  • Glomerulonephritis, IGA / pathology
  • Glomerulonephritis, Membranoproliferative / etiology*
  • Humans
  • Interleukin-6 / genetics
  • Interleukin-6 / physiology*
  • Interleukin-6 / urine
  • Lupus Nephritis / etiology
  • Lupus Nephritis / genetics
  • Lupus Nephritis / pathology
  • Mice
  • Polymerase Chain Reaction
  • RNA, Messenger / genetics


  • Interleukin-6
  • RNA, Messenger