Chronic rejection is the primary cause of long-term allograft loss. Macrophages and their products have been shown to be critical in the development of this process in an established kidney allograft rat model. A new synthetic agent, Gamma lactone, is a specific inhibitor of macrophages and monocytes that inhibits the generation of these populations in vitro and their activities in the effector phase of host alloresponsiveness. We tested its effects on the development of chronic changes in the model. Untreated control allograft recipients developed increasing proteinuria after 12 weeks; progressive glomerulosclerosis, interstitial fibrosis, and arterial obliteration developed thereafter. Infiltrating ED1+ macrophages as noted by immunohistology increased dramatically between 12 and 16 weeks, localizing preferentially in glomeruli and perivascular areas. The presence of these cells was associated with dense expression of their products. Reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction confirmed and expanded the immunohistological findings, showing significant gene expression of macrophage-derived mediators. In contrast, recipients treated with G-Lac daily for 32 weeks never developed proteinuria; macrophage infiltration was dramatically reduced, and expression of their products was virtually absent. At 32 weeks, most glomeruli and arteries remained histologically normal. In another group in which treatment was stopped at 24 weeks, however, proteinuria began to develop by 32 weeks; macrophages infiltrated the organs and expression of their products became manifest. These results confirm the importance of macrophages and macrophage-derived factors in chronic rejection and suggest that a specific inhibitor of macrophage activation may be useful in the prevention of the process over the long term.
View details for Web of Science ID A1995TN23000034
View details for PubMedID 8545893