Oral supplementation of melatonin protects against lupus nephritis renal injury in a pristane-induced lupus mouse model

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Abstract

Aims:

Since lupus nephritis (LN) etiopathogenesis is not fully understood, herein we investigated the morphological basis of LN in mice induced with pristane.

Main methods:

To evaluate the melatonin effects in these animals, we studied the renal cytoarchitecture by means of morphological analyses, immunofluorescence expression of specific markers related to fibrosis, oxidative stress, inflammation and apoptosis.

Key findings:

We observed that pristane-LN mice have serious alterations in the kidney cytoarchitecture, i.e. tubular degeneration, glomerular hypercellularity, matrix mesangial expansion and interstitial inflammation. The pristane-induced LN mice treated with melatonin exhibited a well preserved cytoarchitecture.

Significance:

Our results document that LN etiopathogenesis is related to both tubular damage and glomerular lesions. We suggest that it is essential to take in consideration both these lesions for LN diagnosis and classification. Clearly, we show that the use of melatonin may be a possible therapeutic strategy for improvement the renal injury in this disorder.

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