Here, we used digital spatial profiling (DSP) to describe the glomerular transcriptomic signatures that may characterize the complex molecular mechanisms underlying progressive kidney disease in Alport syndrome, focal segmental glomerulosclerosis, and membranous nephropathy. Our results revealed significant transcriptional heterogeneity among diseased glomeruli, and this analysis showed that histologically similar glomeruli manifested different transcriptional profiles. Using glomerular pathology scores to establish an axis of progression, we identified molecular pathways with progressively decreased expression in response to increasing pathology scores, including signal recognition particle–dependent cotranslational protein targeting to membrane and selenocysteine synthesis pathways. We also identified a distinct signature of upregulated and downregulated genes common to all the diseases investigated when compared with nondiseased tissue from nephrectomies. These analyses using DSP at the single-glomerulus level could help to increase insight into the pathophysiology of kidney disease and possibly the identification of biomarkers of disease progression in glomerulopathies.


Geremy Clair, Hasmik Soloyan, Paolo Cravedi, Andrea Angeletti, Fadi Salem, Laith Al-Rabadi, Roger E. De Filippo, Stefano Da Sacco, Kevin V. Lemley, Sargis Sedrakyan, Laura Perin


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