Glucocorticoid receptor and vascular endothelial growth factor in nephrotic syndrome

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The aim of the study was to assess plasma and urine concentrations of vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) in nephrotic syndrome children (NS) depending on the total dose of glucocorticoids (GC) and the percentage of lymphocytes with glucocorticoid receptor expression (CD3/GCR).


We examined 51 children (2–15 years), allocated to three groups: group I: 13 children with the first NS onset, group II: 13 children with NS relapse, group C: 25 healthy children. The NS patients were examined: (A) before treatment and (B) 4–5 weeks after prednisone administration at a dose of 60 mg/m2/24 h. Plasma and urinary VEGF levels were determined using the immunoenzymatic ELISA method. Flow cytometry was applied to assess CD3/GCR expression.


Higher plasma and urinary VEGF concentrations were noted in NS children before treatment (A), as compared to control subjects (C). Following prednisone therapy (B), VEGF level was reduced but it was still higher than in the control group. Positive correlation was observed between VEGF and protein in the urine (group I r = 0.660, P <0.05, group II r = 0.818, P<0.01) and a weak positive correlation between VEGF in plasma and urine (group I r = 0.531, P<0.05, group II – r = 0.581, P<0.05). CD3/GCR expression was lower in group II. In both groups, the correlation between plasma VEGF and CD3/GCR was positive (P<0.05). Conclusions: 1. Plasma and urinary VEGF levels increase during nephrotic syndrome onset. 2. Glucocorticoid treatment reduces plasma and urinary VEGF levels in NS children.

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