Involvement of R-cadherin in the early stage of glomerulogenesis.
The earliest commitment to the formation of glomeruli is recognizable in S-shaped bodies. Although cell-cell adhesion seems likely to play a crucial role in this process, how glomerular epithelial cells segregate from the other parts of the nephron is unknown. In this study, immunofluorescence microscopy and monoclonal antibodies specific for mouse R-, E-, P- and N-cadherins were used to examine which of these adhesion molecules are involved in glomerulogenesis of the mouse kidney. Weak R-cadherin staining was first found in the vesicle stage, becoming restricted to glomerular visceral epithelial cells (VEC) during the S-shaped body stage. The intensity of this staining became stronger in the capillary loop stage, whereas parietal epithelial cells (PEC) and tubular cells did not stain. In the maturing stage, VEC gradually lost their staining for R-cadherin. E-cadherin was detected in ureteric buds and the upper limb of S-shaped bodies. From the capillary loop to the maturing stage, anti-E-cadherin stained epithelial cells in all tubule segments, but no label was seen in VEC or PEC. P-cadherin was also stained in the ureteric buds and in the upper limb of S-shaped bodies. N-Cadherin was weakly stained in cells at the vesicle stage, but thereafter staining of N-cadherin was not detected at any stage of glomerular formation. Immunoelectron microscopy of differentiating VEC was performed using antibodies specific to alpha-catenin, which is associated with cadherin. Subsequently, immunogold particles identifying alpha-catenin were localized on junctions between primary processes of VEC. These findings indicate that R-cadherin is uniquely expressed in differentiating VEC, suggesting an important role in the early stages of glomerulogenesis.
Goto, S; Yaoita, E; Matsunami, H; Kondo, D; Yamamoto, T; Kawasaki, K; Arakawa, M; Kihara, I
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