Successful Treatment of Patients With Refractory PLA2R-Associated Membranous Nephropathy With Obinutuzumab: A Report of 3 Cases

Nattawat Klomjit, Fernando C. Fervenza, Ladan Zand

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Scopus citations


Membranous nephropathy (MN) is a common cause of nephrotic syndrome in adults. Rituximab, a type I anti-CD20 antibody, has been shown to be an effective therapy in treatment of patients with MN associated with M-type phospholipase A2 receptor (PLA2R) antibodies. Despite its effectiveness, up to 40% of patients may fail to respond to rituximab, which may be related to higher PLA2R antibody titers. Obinutuzumab, a type II anti-CD20 depleter, has been shown to produce a more profound CD20 depletion and be more efficacious in treating certain hematologic malignancies compared with rituximab. We report 3 patients with PLA2R-associated MN for whom rituximab failed to induce immunologic or clinical remisison, but who were successfully treated with obinutuzumab. Obinutuzumab resulted in complete immunologic remission in all 3 cases and was followed by partial remission in 2 of the cases. Obinutuzumab appears to be a promising treatment strategy for PLA2R-associated MN that fails to respond to rituximab.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)883-888
Number of pages6
JournalAmerican Journal of Kidney Diseases
Issue number6
StatePublished - Dec 2020
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
Dr Fervenza has received unrestricted research grants from Genentech Inc, the maker of obinutuzumab. The other authors declare that they have no relevant financial interests.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2020 National Kidney Foundation, Inc.


  • B cell depletion
  • Membranous nephropathy (MN)
  • PLAR
  • case report
  • nephrotic syndrome
  • obinutuzumab
  • rituximab

PubMed: MeSH publication types

  • Case Reports


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