Introduction Endothelial injury plays an important role in the pathogenesis of chronic renal diseases and may be related to oxidative stress. The present work was designed to study markers of endothelial injury and oxidative stress in patients with schistosomal hepatic fibrosis (SHF) in relation to renal dysfunction and haemodynamics.
Methods 45 patients with SHF and 15 healthy subjects were included in the study. The severity of liver disease was assessed using Child-Pugh scoring system. According to urinary albumin excretion rate, patients with SHF were classified into 15 patients with normoalbuminuria, 15 patients with microalbuminuria and 15 patients with persistent albuminuria. Endothelial injury was assessed by plasma von Willibrand factor (vWF) activity and serum ACE levels. Serum malondialdehyde (MDA) levels were also measured as a marker for oxidative stress. Tubular damage was determined by measuring 24-h urinary levels of leucine aminopeptidase (LAP). Renal haemodynamics were assessed using Duplex-doppler ultrasonography by calculating the diastolic/systolic renal flow velocity ratio (d/s), intrarenal renal resistive index (RI) and hilar renal blood flow (RBF).
Results Compared to healthy subjects, patients with SHF showed significant increases in plasma vWF activity, serum levels of ACE and MDA and urinary LAP levels (p<0.05). Serum MDA and urinary LAP levels were significantly higher in patients with microalbuminuria and persistent albuminuria than in patients with normoalbuminuria while serum ACE level was significantly higher in patients with persistent albuminuria than in those with normoalbuminuria or microalbuminuria (p<0.05). Patients with SHF also showed a significant increase in RI and significant decreases in d/s ratio and RBF compared with healthy subjects regardless of the severity of glomerular injury (p<0.05). No statistically significant correlations were found between the severity of liver disease on one hand and plasma vWF activity, serum ACE levels, urinary LAP levels and renal haemodynamics on the other hand in patients with SHF (p>0.05), while there was a significant positive correlation between serum MDA levels and Child-Pugh score in these patients (p<0.05).
Conclusion Endothelial injury, possibly due to oxidative stress, may play an important role in the pathogenesis of renal dysfunction and increased renovascular impedence in SHF and in the initiation of schistosomal nephropathy in this disease.
Competing interests None declared.
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