Intrarenal Arterial Lesions Are Associated with Higher Blood Pressure, Reduced Renal Function and Poorer Renal Outcomes in Patients with IgA Nephropathy Journal Articles uri icon

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  • <b><i>Background/Aims:</i></b> Arterial fibrotic intimal thickening and arteriolar hyaline are considered common pathological features in immunoglobulin A nephropathy (IgAN), whereas little is known about the acute pathological manifestations of endothelial cell injury. The aim of this study was to investigate characteristics of intrarenal arterial lesions and to estimate their prognostic values in patients with IgAN. The primary renal endpoint was a 50% reduction in estimated glomerular filtration rate (eGFR) or end-stage renal disease (ESRD). <b><i>Methods:</i></b> Various renal arterial lesions (arterial fibrotic intimal thickening, arteriolar hyaline, arteriolar endotheliocyte swelling, arteriolar inflammatory cell infiltration, and arteriolar thrombosis) in 1683 patients with IgAN were reviewed and reclassified using a semi-quantitative scoring system. Their correlations with clinical features, pathological characteristics, and renal outcomes were evaluated. <b><i>Results:</i></b> The prevalence of intrarenal arterial lesions was up to 72.2% in IgAN patients. There were 978 patients (58.1%) with arterial fibrotic intimal thickening, 350 patients (20.8%) with arteriolar hyaline, 432 patients (25.7%) with arteriolar endotheliocyte swelling, 356 patients (21.2%) with arteriolar inflammatory cell infiltration and 43 patients (2.6%) with arteriolar thrombosis. Arterial fibrotic intimal thickening and arteriolar hyaline were strongly associated with higher mean arterial pressure (MAP) and reduced eGFR (<i>P</i> &#x3c; 0.001) but were not related to proteinuria at the time of renal biopsy. In contrast, arteriolar endotheliocyte swelling and arteriolar thrombosis were correlated with heavier proteinuria as well as higher MAP and reduced eGFR. During follow-up, patients with vascular lesions received more renin-angiotensin system (RAS) blockade and less glucocorticoid and showed poorer renal outcomes. Univariate Cox model showed that the presence of renal vascular lesions [hazard ratio (HR) = 25.01, 95% confidence interval (CI): 6.19 to 101.03, <i>P</i> &#x3c; 0.001] was a risk factor for renal outcomes. However, in multivariable Cox analysis, which included clinical factors and the Oxford-MEST-C, vascular lesions were not significantly associated with an increased risk of renal failure. Remarkably, the impact of vascular lesions on the survival from ESRD or 50% reduction in renal function was eliminated by the use of RAS blockade after adjustment for eGFR, proteinuria, and MAP. <b><i>Conclusion:</i></b> Our study demonstrates the high prevalence of vascular lesions, including the chronic and acute arterial pathological changes, in patients with IgAN. The presence of vascular lesions is associated with higher MAP, reduced eGFR and poorer renal outcomes, which could be influenced by the RAS blockade treatment.


  • Zhang, Ying
  • Sun, Lili
  • Zhou, Suhan
  • Xu, Qihe
  • Xu, Qiannan
  • Liu, Dongyu
  • Liu, Lu
  • Hu, Ruimin
  • Quan, Songxia
  • Xing, Guolan

publication date

  • 2018