Laminin-521 protein therapy for glomerular basement membrane and podocyte abnormalities in a model of pierson syndrome

Meei Hua Lin, Joseph B. Miller, Yamato Kikkawa, Hani Y. Suleiman, Karl Tryggvason, Bradley L. Hodges, Jeffrey H. Miner

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

19 Scopus citations


Background Laminin α5β2γ1 (LM-521) is a major component of the GBM. Mutations in LAMB2 that prevent LM-521 synthesis and/or secretion cause Pierson syndrome, a rare congenital nephrotic syndrome with diffusemesangial sclerosis and ocular and neurologic defects. Because theGBMis uniquely accessible to plasma, which permeates endothelial cell fenestrae, we hypothesized that intravenous delivery of LM- 521 could replace the missing LM-521 in the GBM of Lamb2 mutant mice and restore glomerular permselectivity. MethodsWeinjected human LM-521 (hLM-521), amacromolecule of approximately 800 kD, into the retroorbital sinus of Lamb22/2 pups daily. Deposition of hLM-521 into the GBM was investigated by fluorescencemicroscopy. We assayed the effects of hLM-521 on glomerular permselectivity by urinalysis and the effects on podocytes by desmin immunostaining and ultrastructural analysis of podocyte architecture. Results Injected hLM-521 rapidly and stably accumulated in the GBM of all glomeruli. Super-resolution imaging showed that hLM-521 accumulated in the correct orientation in the GBM, primarily on the endothelial aspect. Treatment with hLM-521 greatly reduced the expression of the podocyte injury marker desmin and attenuated the foot process effacement observed in untreated pups. Moreover, treatment with hLM-521 delayed the onset of proteinuria but did not prevent nephrotic syndrome, perhaps due to its absence from the podocyte aspect of the GBM. Conclusions These studies show that GBM composition and function can be altered in vivo via vascular delivery of even very large proteins, which may advance therapeutic options for patients with abnormal GBM composition, whether genetic or acquired.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1426-1436
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of the American Society of Nephrology
Issue number5
StatePublished - May 2018


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