Lipoprotein glomerulopathy (LPG) is a newly recognized renal disease characterized by thrombus-like lipoproteins in the glomerular capillaries and abnormal lipoprotein profiles similar to those in type III hyperlipoproteinemia. Recently, these conditions have been shown to be associated with some apolipoprotein E (apoE) mutations. We found an apoE mutation (designated apoE-Sendai) that substitutes arginine 145 with proline. This mutation occurs most frequently in Japanese patients with LPG. To elucidate the etiological role of this mutation in the apoE gene, we established an experimental model for LPG by transducing apoE-Sendai in apoE knockout mice with the use of an adenovirus vector. Based on the findings in patients with LPG and its animal model, we suggest that the glomerular lesions are not only caused by hyperlipidemia, but also by in situ interaction between lipoprotein-containing mutant apoE with the glomerulus. In this review, we outline the clinical features of LPG and discuss the relationship between apoE mutations and LPG.
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