Granulopoiesis-related genes are distinctively upregulated in peripheral leukocytes of patients with antineutrophil cytoplasmic autoantibodies (ANCA)-associated glomerulonephritis. Affymetrix microarrays identified the upregulation of nine neutrophilic primary granule genes, including myeloperoxidase (MPO) and proteinase 3 (PR3), plus five secondary granule genes. Coordinate expression of granulocyte maturation marker CD35, measured by TaqMan PCR, and positive in situ staining for PR3 transcripts in polymorphic neutrophils and monocytes indicate that these genes are expressed in "mature" cells. Increased transcripts correlated with disease activity and absolute neutrophil values but not with "left shift," drug regimen, cytokine levels, hematuria, proteinuria, ANCA titer, serum creatinine, gender, or age. Upregulation of PR3 and MPO transcripts was specifically associated with ANCA disease (n = 56) as these changes were not detected in patients with ESRD (n = 25) or systemic lupus erythematosus (n = 17), as determined by TaqMan PCR. This is the first report of this phenomenon in nonneoplastic cells. The data raise the hypothesis that, in addition to the presence of anti-MPO or anti-PR3 autoantibodies, a second critical component in the cause of this disease is the reactivation of once-silenced genes leading to increased antigen availability.
|Original language||English (US)|
|Number of pages||12|
|Journal||Journal of the American Society of Nephrology|
|State||Published - Aug 2004|