A Glimpse of Matrix Metalloproteinases in Diabetic Nephropathy
Matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs) are proteolytic enzymes belonging to the family of zinc-dependent endopeptidases
that are capable of degrading almost all the proteinaceous components of the extracellular matrix (ECM). It
is known that MMPs play a role in a number of renal diseases, such as, various forms of glomerulonephritis and tubular
diseases, including some of the inherited kidney diseases. In this regard, ECM accumulation is considered to be a hallmark
morphologic finding of diabetic nephropathy, which not only is related to the excessive synthesis of matrix proteins,
but also to their decreased degradation by the MMPs. In recent years, increasing evidence suggest that there is a good correlation
between the activity or expression of MMPs and progression of renal disease in patients with diabetic nephropathy
and in various experimental animal models. In such a diabetic milieu, the expression of MMPs is modulated by high
glucose, advanced glycation end products (AGEs), TGF-β, reactive oxygen species (ROS), transcription factors and some
of the microRNAs. In this review, we focused on the structure and functions of MMPs, and their role in the pathogenesis
of diabetic nephropathy.
Keywords: Diabetic nephropathy, extracellular matrix, metalloproteinases, TGF-β.
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