Injury of the renal microvascular endothelium alters barrier function after ischemia

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The role of renal microvascular endothelial cell injury in the pathophysiology of ischemic acute renal failure (ARF) remains largely unknown. No consistent morphological alterations have been ascribed to the endothelium of the renal microvasculature as a result of ischemia-reperfusion injury. Therefore, the purpose of this study was to examine biochemical markers of endothelial injury and morphological changes in the renal microvascular endothelium in a rodent model of ischemic ARF. Circulating von Willebrand factor (vWF) was measured as a marker of endothelial injury. Twenty-four hours after ischemia, circulating vWF peaked at 124% over baseline values (P = 0.001). The FVB-TIE2/GFP mouse was utilized to localize morphological changes in the renal microvascular endothelium. Immediately after ischemia, there was a marked increase in F-actin aggregates in the basal and basolateral aspect of renal microvascular endothelial cells in the corticomedullary junction. After 24 h of reperfusion, the pattern of F-actin staining was more similar to that observed under physiological conditions. In addition, alterations in the integrity of the adherens junctions of the renal microvasculature, as demonstrated by loss of localization in vascular endothelial cadherin immunostaining, were observed after 24 h of reperfusion. This observation temporally correlated with the greatest extent of permeability defect in the renal microvasculature as identified using fluorescent dextrans and two-photon intravital imaging. Taken together, these findings indicate that renal vascular endothelial injury occurs in ischemic ARF and may play an important role in the pathophysiology of ischemic ARF.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)F191-F198
JournalAmerican Journal of Physiology - Renal Physiology
Issue number2 54-2
StatePublished - Aug 1 2003


  • Vascular endothelial cadherin
  • Vascular permeability
  • Von Willebrand factor

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physiology

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