Membranoproliferative glomerulonephritis associated with autoimmune diseases

Ladan Zand, Fernando C. Fervenza, Samih H. Nasr, Sanjeev Sethi

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27 Scopus citations


Membranoproliferative glomerulonephritis (MPGN) has been classified based on its pathogenesis into immune complex-mediated and complement-mediated MPGN. The immune complex-mediated type is secondary to chronic infections, autoimmune diseases or monoclonal gammopathy. There is a paucity of data on MPGN associated with autoimmune diseases. We reviewed the Mayo Clinic database over a 10-year period and identified 12 patients with MPGN associated with autoimmune diseases, after exclusion of systemic lupus erythematosus. The autoimmune diseases included rheumatoid arthritis, primary Sjögren's syndrome, undifferentiated connective tissue disease, primary sclerosing cholangitis and Graves' disease. Nine of the 12 patients were female, and the mean age was 57.9 years. C4 levels were decreased in nine of 12 patients tested. The serum creatinine at time of renal biopsy was 2.2 ± 1.0 mg/dl and the urinary protein was 2,850 ± 3,543 mg/24 h. Three patients required dialysis at the time of renal biopsy. Renal biopsy showed an MPGN in all cases, with features of cryoglobulins in six cases; immunoglobulin (Ig)M was the dominant Ig, and both subendothelial and mesangial electron dense deposits were noted. Median follow-up was 10.9 months. Serum creatinine and proteinuria improved to 1.6 ± 0.8 mg/dl and 428 ± 677 mg/24 h, respectively, except in 3 patients with end-stage renal disease. In summary, this study describes the clinical features, renal biopsy findings, laboratory evaluation, treatment and prognosis of MPGN associated with autoimmune diseases.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)165-171
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Nephrology
Issue number2
StatePublished - Apr 2014
Externally publishedYes


  • Autoimmune disease
  • Cryoglobulins
  • MPGN
  • Rheumatoid arthritis
  • Sjögren's syndrome


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