The renoprotective role of autophagy activation in proximal tubular epithelial cells in diabetic nephropathy

Journal of Diabetes and Its Complications
Ying XuQiang Wan


With intensive investigations recently, autophagy is hoped to be a potential therapeutic target to prevent or alleviate diabetic nephropathy (DN). Our previous study revealed that lipotoxicity participated in epithelial-to-mesenchymal transition (EMT) of proximal tubular epithelial cells (PTECs) under diabetic conditions. Based on evidences that autophagy and lipid metabolism are closely related, we investigated autophagy under diabetic conditions and how it contributed in the lipotoxicity and EMT. In high-glucose-cultured PTECs, we found that Beclin1 and LC3-II were elevated, while p62 was decreased. These results indicate that autophagy activity was elevated under diabetic conditions. Autophagy deficiency induced by autophagy inhibitors, chloroquine diphosphate (CQ) and 3-Methyladenine (3-MA), and by Atg5 siRNA transfection exacerbated lipid accumulation and EMT. This supports that the elevated autophagy activity acts as a renoprotective response under diabetic conditions. Treatment of rapamycin, which is a mammalian target of rapamycin (mTOR) receptor-specific inhibitor and a known autophagy activator, attenuated high-glucose-induced lipid accumulation and EMT. The Atg5 silence counteracted the protective effect of rapamycin...Continue Reading


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Related Concepts

Chloroquine diphosphate, (-)-isomer
P62 protein, human
MAP1LC3A protein, human
BECN1 protein, human
ATG5 protein, human
FRAP1 protein, human
Programmed Cell Death, Type II

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