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Understanding tubulointerstitial injury and repair mechanisms paves the way for renal outcome improvement in lupus nephritis

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Xipell, M 
Egan, A 
Lledó, G 
Villarreal, JZ 
Espinosa, G 


Despite improvements in patient survival and quality of life, long-term renal survival has not changed significantly in the recent decades and nephritis relapses affect over 50% of patients with lupus nephritis. Renal fibrosis affecting the tubulointerstitial compartment is a central determinant of the prognosis of any kidney disease. Notwithstanding this evidence, the current 2003 ISN/RPS classification still focuses on glomerular pathology and does not include a mandatory score with clear subcategories of the tubulointerstitial injury in the biopsy. The pathogenesis, and the morphological and molecular characteristics of this process in patients with lupus nephritis will be considered, together with a discussion about the concepts the clinician needs to efficiently address in this injury during daily practice and in future clinical trials. Both tubulointerstitial inflammation and fibrosis are strongly correlated with poor renal outcomes in lupus nephritis, regardless of the extent of glomerular damage. Therefore, it is essential to develop reliable and noninvasive approaches to predict which patients are most likely to develop CKD so that appropriate interventions can be adopted before ESRD is established. Currently, no ideal method for monitoring kidney fibrosis exists, since repeated renal biopsies are invasive. Promising methods for assessing and monitoring fibrosis non-invasively include imaging techniques, such as magnetic resonance imaging or ex vivo confocal microscopy, integrated in computational and digital pathology techniques. Finally, beyond specific immunosuppressive treatment in Lupus Nephritis, identifying and treating cardiovascular risk factors should be a cornerstone of treatment in these patients.



32 Biomedical and Clinical Sciences, 3202 Clinical Sciences, Health Disparities, Clinical Research, Minority Health, Autoimmune Disease, Kidney Disease, Women's Health, Lupus, 4 Detection, screening and diagnosis, 4.1 Discovery and preclinical testing of markers and technologies, Renal and urogenital, 3 Good Health and Well Being

Journal Title

Revista Colombiana de Reumatologia

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Elsevier BV