Alteration of glomerular anionic sites by the development of subepithelial deposits in experimental glomerulonephritis in the rat

Research paper by Yasuhito Suzuki, Akira Maesawa, Katsuyuki Matsui, Takashi Oite, Yutaka Koda, Masaaki Arakawa

Indexed on: 01 Jan '83Published on: 01 Jan '83Published in: Virchows Archiv. B, Cell pathology including molecular pathology


Using highly cationic polyethyleneimine, alteration of glomerular anionic sites were evaluated ultrastructurally in two types of rat glomerulonephritis (GN); chronic serum sickness GN and heterologous (passive) or autologous (active) Heymann’s GN. Daily i.v. injections of egg white lysozyme in physiologic saline into presensitized rats led to the formation of numerous mesangial and subepithelial deposits. In the non-proteinuric period in which immune deposits were localized predominantly in the mesangium, anionic sites of the laminae rarae and the epithelial cell coat were clearly observed. In the subsequent proteinuric period in which numerous subepithelial deposits were superimposed, a broad loss of anionic sites in the epithelial cell coat was seen. Splitting and focal loss of anionic sites on the lamina rara externa adjacent to the subepithelial deposits were commonly observed both in passive and active Heymann’s GN and in lysozyme GN. These findings indicate that the subepithelial deposits are closely involved in the development of proteinuria by injuring the anionic sites, especially those on lamina rare externa of the glomerular basement membrane.