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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Glomeruli cooperate with macrophages in converting arachidonic acid to prostaglandins and hydroxyeicosatetraenoic acids.

The interaction of proliferating macrophages with the glomerulus may play an important role in certain forms of glomerulonephritis. This interaction could involve metabolites of arachidonic acid (C20:4) such as prostaglandins (PG) and lipoxygenase products. We therefore investigated the conversion of exogenous [3H] C20:4 into hydroxyeicosatetraenoic acids (HETE) and PG by isolated glomeruli and macrophages from rats, alone and in combination. As demonstrated by HPLC, glomeruli converted C20:4 predominantly to lipoxygenase products -mainly 12-HETE- and, to a lesser extent, to PG. Resident macrophages converted C20:4 to equivalent amounts of HETE and PG, mainly 12-HETE and 6 keto-PGF1 alpha. When macrophages and glomeruli were studied in combination, a striking interaction was detected in both pathways of C20:4 metabolism. Production of 6 keto-PGF1 alpha was stimulated and considerable amounts of TXB2, PGD2 and hydroxyheptadecatrienoic acid (HHT) were also produced. Total 12-HETE production was unchanged. When a lipid extract of glomeruli, containing oxygenated metabolites of C20:4, was added to macrophages, stimulation of 12-HETE occurred without any change in HHT or PG formation. When, on the contrary, a lipid extract from macrophages was added to glomeruli, 12-HETE production by the glomeruli was nearly completely abolished. Thus the unchanged total 12-HETE production by coincubated glomeruli and macrophages resulted from its increased production by macrophages and its decreased production by glomeruli. These data suggest that interaction between glomeruli and macrophages results in activation of C20:4 metabolism by macrophages followed by inhibition of C20:4 metabolism by glomeruli. Such a regulatory process could play a role in the inflammatory response to immunological injuries during macrophage-dependent human and experimental glomerulonephritis.[1]


  1. Glomeruli cooperate with macrophages in converting arachidonic acid to prostaglandins and hydroxyeicosatetraenoic acids. Sraer, J., Baud, L., Bens, M., Podjarny, E., Schlondorff, D., Ardaillou, R., Sraer, J.D. Prostaglandins, leukotrienes, and medicine. (1984) [Pubmed]
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