Background: In various animal studies, vitamin D has been shown to have a significant effect on reduction of proteinuria and the progression of kidney disease. However, little is known on its renoprotective effect in adriamycin (ADR)-induced nephrosis mice. The present study was intended to determine the therapeutic benefit of 22-oxa-calcitriol (OCT), a vitamin D analog, in reducing proteinuria and its renoprotective effect, i.e. preventing podocyte injury on ADR-induced nephrosis mice. Methods: Three experimental groups were used as follows: (1) nephrosis mice, established by a single intravenous injection of ADR; (2) ADR+OCT mice, nephrosis mice treated with OCT, and (3) mice treated only with OCT as the control group. Podocyte injury was assessed by podocyte apoptosis using the TUNEL assay, podocyte counting, podocyte-specific expressed protein by immunofluorescence and Western blot analysis, and foot process effacement using electron microscopy. Results: Lower proteinuria was observed in ADR+OCT mice. Improvement in glomerulosclerosis and interstitial fibrosis, and prevention of glomerular hyperfiltration were observed in ADR+OCT mice. Immunofluorescence and Western blot analyses showed restoration of downregulated expression of nephrin, CD2AP and podocin. Nevertheless, dendrin expression was not restored. An insignificant reduction in podocyte numbers was found in ADR+OCT mice. Complete foot process effacement was partially prevented in ADR+OCT mice. Conclusions: The results indicate that OCT reduces podocyte injury and has renoprotective effects in ADR nephrosis mice.
- Adriamycin-induced nephrosis
- Podocyte injury