Identification and characterization of a glomerular-specific promoter from the human nephrin gene

M. Andrew Wong, Shiying Cui, Susan E. Quaggin*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

60 Scopus citations

Abstract

Podocytes are highly specialized cells that make up a major portion of the glomerular filtration barrier in the kidney. They are also believed to play a pivotal role in the progression of chronic renal disease due to diverse causes that include diabetes (3, 20, 24) and aging (1, 7). Despite the importance of podocytes for kidney function and disease, studies of this cell type have been hindered due to a lack of model systems. Recently, the gene responsible for congenital Finnish nephropathy was identified and named nephrin (13). Nephrin expression is restricted to slit diaphragms of podocytes (11, 30). Infants with congenital Finnish nephropathy develop massive proteinuria and subsequent kidney failure due to podocyte injury. We have identified a 1.25-kb DNA fragment from the human nephrin promoter and 5'-flanking region that is capable of directing podocyte-specific expression in transgenic mice; this represents the first glomerular-specific promoter to be identified. Use of this transgene will facilitate studies of the podocyte in vivo and allow the identification of transacting factors that are required for podocyte-specific expression.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)F1027-F1032
JournalAmerican Journal of Physiology - Renal Physiology
Volume279
Issue number6 48-6
DOIs
StatePublished - 2000

Keywords

  • Glomerulus
  • Podocyte
  • Tissue-specific expression
  • Transgene

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physiology
  • Urology

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