Vitamin D reduces kidney fibrosis through inhibition of fibroblast activation. - GreenMedInfo Summary
Vitamin D Attenuates Kidney Fibrosis via Reducing Fibroblast Expansion, Inflammation, and Epithelial Cell Apoptosis.
Kobe J Med Sci. 2016 ;62(2):E38-44. Epub 2016 Jul 5. PMID: 27578035
Kidney fibrosis is the common final pathway of chronic kidney diseases (CKD). It is characterized by myofibroblast formation, inflammation, and epithelial architecture damage. Vitamin D is known as a renoprotective agent, although the precise mechanism is not well understood. This study aimed to elucidate the effect of vitamin D in fibroblast expansion, inflammation, and apoptosis in kidney fibrosis. We performed unilateral ureteral obstruction (UUO) in male Swiss-Webster background mice (3 months, 30-40 grams) to induce kidney fibrosis. The mice (n=25) were divided into five groups: UUO, 3 groups treated with different oral vitamin D doses (0.125µg/kg (UUO+VD1), 0.25 µg/kg (UUO+VD2), and 0.5 µg/kg (UUO+VD3), and a Sham operation (SO) group with ethanol 0.2% supplementation. We sacrificed the mice on day14 after the operation and harvested the kidney. We made paraffin sections for histological analysis. Tubular injury and fibrosis were quantified based on periodic acid-Schiff (PAS) and Sirius Red (SR) staining. Immunostaining was done for examination of myofibroblasts (αSMA), fibroblasts (PDGFRβ), TLR4, and apoptosis (TUNEL). We did RNA extraction and cDNA for Reverse transcriptase PCR (RT-PCR) experiment for measuring MCP-1, ICAM-1, TLR4, and collagen 1 expression. TGFβ1 level was quantified using ELISA. We observed a significantly lower levels of fibrosis (p<0.001), tubular injury scores (p<0.001), and myofibroblast areas (p<0.001) in the groups treated with vitamin D compared with the UUO group. The TGFβ1 levels and the fibroblast quantifications were also significantly lower in the former group. However, we did not find any significant difference among the various vitamin D-treated groups. Concerning the dose-independent effect, we only compared the UUO+VD-1 group with SO group and found by TUNEL assay that UUO+VD-1 had a significantly lower epithelial cell apoptosis. RT-PCR analysis showed lower expression of collagen1, as well as inflammation-mediator expression (MCP-1, ICAM-1, TLR4) in the UUO+VD-1 group compared with the SO group. Vitamin D reduces kidney fibrosis through inhibition offibroblast activation, and ameliorates epithelial cell architecture.