Renal expression of IL-6 and TNFalpha genes in lupus nephritis

Lupus. 1998;7(3):154-8. doi: 10.1191/096120398678919949.


These studies were carried out to examine the presence of the inflammatory cytokines IL-6 and TNFalpha in kidneys of patients with lupus nephritis as an indicator of their possible role in its pathogenesis. A total of 19 kidney biopsies from patients with type III or IV lupus nephritis were processed by direct immunofluorescence using monoclonal anti-IL-6 and TNFalpha antibodies. Local expression of these genes was demonstrated both by in situ hybridization and by reverse transcriptase-PCR amplification of total RNA isolated from kidney tissue. Fifty-two percent of the biopsies exhibited IL-6 and TNFalpha deposited along the glomeruli and tubules; in situ expression of these cytokines was demonstrated in 6 biopsies with type IV, and 1 with type III nephritis. Inflammatory cytokines are actively synthesized in the kidneys of patients with lupus nephritis and therefore, may play a role in its pathogenesis.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Female
  • Fluorescent Antibody Technique, Direct
  • Gene Expression / genetics
  • Genes / genetics*
  • Humans
  • In Situ Hybridization, Fluorescence
  • Interleukin-6 / genetics*
  • Kidney / chemistry
  • Kidney / metabolism
  • Lupus Nephritis / genetics*
  • Male
  • RNA, Messenger / analysis
  • Tumor Necrosis Factor-alpha / genetics*


  • Interleukin-6
  • RNA, Messenger
  • Tumor Necrosis Factor-alpha