Urotensin-II levels in children with minimal change nephrotic syndrome
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Human urotensin-II (hU-II) is the most potent mammalian vasoconstrictor identified to date. Although it is expressed mainly in the brain and spinal cord, it is also detected in other tissues, such as the kidney. It has been speculated that U-II might be an important physiological mediator of vascular tone and blood pressure in humans. To our knowledge, no studies have investigated the level of U-II in children with minimal change nephrotic syndrome (MCNS). Considering the renal synthesis and vasoactive role of U-II, we aimed to measure the plasma and urinary levels of U-II in children with MCNS, and investigate the correlation with other clinical and laboratory findings. Twenty-six children with clinical MCNS, ranging in age from 2 to 7 years, were compared with 16 healthy age- and sex-matched controls. The median age of the children was 4.73±2.36 years. U-II level was measured by RIA. Plasma U-II concentrations (pg/ml) were decreased during relapse (20.11±14.43 in relapse, 38.94±23.86 in remission, P <0.05), whereas urinary U-II levels (pg/mg urinary creatinine) were significantly higher in relapse than in remission (37.31±28.43 in relapse, 31.09±21.10 in remission, P <0.05). We could not detect any relationship between U-II levels and other clinical and laboratory parameters. Our data indicate that the important changes in plasma and urinary U-II levels during relapse may be the result of heavy proteinuria rather than playing a role in mediating the clinical and laboratory manifestations of MCNS in children.