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BACKGROUND Fibroblastic foci are characteristic features in lung parenchyma of patients with idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF). They comprise aggregates of mesenchymal cells which underlie sites of unresolved epithelial injury and are associated with progression of fibrosis. However, the cellular origins of these mesenchymal phenotypes remain unclear. We(More)
Excessive deposition of fibronectin in the glomerular mesangium in diabetic nephropathy (DN) is partly due to the induction of transforming growth factor-␤ (TGF-␤) by high glucose. TGF-␤ induces its downstream mediator connective tissue growth factor (CTGF), which stimulates fibronectin matrix synthesis, a process that requires the presence of ␣5␤1(More)
Connective tissue growth factor (CTGF) is now considered to be one of the important driver molecules for the pathogenesis of diabetic nephropathy (DN) and possibly many other fibrotic disorders. However, the molecular mechanisms by which CTGF functions remain to be established. In an attempt to define these mechanisms, this study was designed to investigate(More)
Interactions between inflammatory infiltrates and resident tubular epithelial cells may play important roles in the development of tubulointerstitial fibrosis, by promoting epithelial cell-myofibroblast transdifferentiation (EMT). Human proximal tubular epithelial cells transdifferentiated to myofibroblasts after treatment with activated PBMC conditioned(More)
We have developed a high efficiency system in which mammalian extracts join DNA double-strand breaks with non-complementary termini. This system has been used to obtain a large number of junction sequences from a range of different break-end combinations, allowing the elucidation of the joining mechanisms. Using an extract of calf thymus it was found that(More)
We describe a new neuromuscular disorder in the kyphoscoliotic mouse mutant (ky). Mice were killed at ages from birth to 210 days, and tissues were taken for standard light microscopy, histochemistry, nerve ending studies, and electron microscopy. At birth a few myofibers showed phagocytosis ultrastructurally. Between 6 and 25 days there was prominent(More)
Diabetic nephropathy is characterized by excessive deposition of extracellular matrix proteins in the mesangium and basement membrane of the glomerulus and in the renal tubulointerstitium. This review summarizes the main changes in protein composition of the glomerular mesangium and basement membrane and the evidence that, in the mesangium, these are(More)
Connective tissue growth factor (CTGF/CCN2) is a member of the CCN family of matricellular proteins. Its expression is induced by a number of factors including TGF-beta. It has been associated with fibrosis in various tissues including the kidney. Diabetic nephropathy (DN) develops in about 30% of patients with diabetes and is characterized by thickening of(More)
CCN2, a secreted profibrotic protein, is highly expressed in diabetic nephropathy (DN) and implicated in its pathogenesis; however, the actions of CCN2 in DN remain elusive. We previously demonstrated that CCN2 triggers signaling via tropomyosin receptor kinase A (TrkA). Trace expression of TrkA is found in normal kidneys, but its expression is elevated in(More)
Transforming growth factor-β (TGF-β) is an inducer of type I collagen, and uncontrolled collagen production leads to tissue scarring and organ failure. Here we hypothesize that uncovering a molecular mechanism that enables us to switch off type I collagen may prove beneficial in treating fibrosis. For the first time, to our knowledge, we provide evidence(More)