Tubulointerstitial nephritis antigen (TIN-ag) is a 58 kDa glycoprotein restricted within the kidney to basement membranes underlying the epithelium of Bowman'S capsule and proximal and distal tubules. Autoantibody formation against this component has been described in association with primary immune-mediated tubulointerstital nephritis, membranous nephropathy and anti-glomerular basement membrane nephritis. In the present report, the ontogeny of this protein was studied in human fetal kidney tissue by immunohistochemical analysis of immature and developing nephrons using a panel of monoclonal and polyclonal antibodies. TIN-ag is first detected in basement membranes underlying the epithelium of Bowman'S capsule of early capillary loop stage glomeruli and the primitive proximal tubule. No detectable expression is observed in the basement membranes of the branching ureteric bud, nephrogenic vesicle, or comma shape and s-shape stages of nephrogenic development. Increased staining of the proximal tubular basement membrane is associated with outgrowth of the primitive tubule from the urinary pole of the developing glomerulus. In more mature fetal tubules, TIN-ag expression closely resembles that of previously reported observations in mature tissue where it is present in high amounts in the basement membranes of proximal tubules, and to a lesser extent in Bowman'S capsule and distal tubules. Our results suggest that TIN-ag expression is developmentally regulated in a precise spatial and temporal pattern throughout nephrogenesis.
- Kidney development
- tubulointerstitial nephritis antigen