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Publication Detail
Neutrophils are key mediators in crescentic glomerulonephritis and targets for new therapeutic approaches
  • Publication Type:
    Journal article
  • Publication Sub Type:
  • Authors:
    Antonelou M, Evans RDR, Henderson SR, Salama AD
  • Publication date:
  • Pagination:
    230, 238
  • Journal:
    Nephrology, dialysis, transplantation : official publication of the European Dialysis and Transplant Association - European Renal Association
  • Volume:
  • Issue:
  • Status:
Crescentic glomerulonephritis (CGN) results from a diverse set of diseases associated with immune dysregulation and the breakdown of self-tolerance to a wide range of autoantigens, some known and some that remain unknown. Experimental data demonstrate that neutrophils have an important role in the pathogenesis of CGN. Upon activation, neutrophils generate reactive oxygen species, release serine proteases and form neutrophil extracellular traps (NETs), all of which can induce direct tissue damage. In addition, serine proteases such as myeloperoxidase and proteinase 3, presented on NETs, can be processed and recognized as autoantigens, leading to the generation and maintenance of autoimmune responses in susceptible individuals. The basis of the specificity of autoimmune responses in different patients to NET proteins is unclear, but relates at least in part to differences in human leucocyte antigen expression. Conditions associated with CGN are often characterized by aberrant neutrophil activation and NETosis and, in some, impaired NET degradation. Targeting neutrophil degranulation and NETosis is now possible using a variety of novel compounds and may provide a promising therapeutic alternative to glucocorticoid use, which has been a mainstay of management in CGN for decades and is associated with significant adverse effects. In this review, we discuss the evidence supporting the role of neutrophils in the development of CGN and the pathways identified in neutrophil degranulation and NETosis that may translate to novel therapeutic applications.
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