Plasmin reduces fibronectin deposition by mesangial cells in a protease-activated receptor-1 independent manner

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Protease-activated receptor-1 (PAR-1) potentiates diabetic nephropathy (DN) as evident from reduced kidney injury in diabetic PAR-1 deficient mice. Although thrombin is the prototypical PAR-1 agonist, anticoagulant treatment does not limit DN in experimental animal models suggesting that thrombin is not the endogenous PAR-1 agonist driving DN. To identify the endogenous PAR-1 agonist potentiating diabetes-induced nephropathy. Unbiased protease expression profiling in glomeruli from human kidneys with DN was performed using publically available microarray data. The identified prime candidate PAR-1 agonist was subsequently analysed for PAR-1-dependent induction of fibrosis in vitro. Of the 553 proteases expressed in the human genome, 247 qualified as potential PAR-1 agonists of which 71 were significantly expressed above background in diabetic glomeruli. The recently identified PAR-1 agonist plasmin(ogen), together with its physiological activator tissue plasminogen activator, were among the highest expressed proteases. Plasmin did however not induce mesangial proliferation and/or fibronectin deposition in vitro. In a PAR-1 independent manner, plasmin even reduced fibronectin deposition. Expression profiling identified plasmin as potential endogenous PAR-1 agonist driving DN. Instead of inducing fibronectin expression, plasmin however reduced mesangial fibronectin deposition in vitro. Therefore we conclude that plasmin may not be the endogenous PAR-1 agonist potentiating DN
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)152-156
Number of pages5
JournalBiochemistry and biophysics reports
Publication statusPublished - 29 Mar 2017


  • Diabetic nephropathy
  • PAR-1
  • Plasmin
  • Protease profiling

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