Background: Diabetic nephropathy is a progressive condition which develops for many years. We analyzed expression of Snail and serum response factor (SRF), epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT) regulatory transcription factors with a key role in renal fibrosis, in different renal areas of diabetic rats during ageing. Methods: Male Sprague–Dawley rats were treated with 55 mg/kg streptozotocin (model of type 1 diabetes mellitus; DM group) or citrate buffer (control). DM group received insulin weekly to prevent ketoacidosis. After 2 weeks, 2, 6 and 12 months kidney samples were collected and analysed in different renal areas. Results: Snail expression was located within cortex in proximal convoluted tubules, in control and DM groups, in the cytoplasm. Percentage of Snail-positive cells in control groups was high and decreased with time, whereas in DM groups the highest percentage was after 2 weeks. In all time points, smaller percentage of Snail expression was seen in DM groups compared to controls. SRF expression was mostly located in the proximal convoluted tubules, always in the cytoplasm. In control groups SRF was expressed in all time periods in proximal convoluted tubules, with decrement after 12 months. Percentage of SRF-positive cells was higher in control groups compared to DM in all time points, with the exception of 12 months. To a smaller degree, SRF expression was seen in the glomeruli and distal convoluted tubules, with more SRF positive cells in DM compared to their control groups. Conclusions: While Snail expression remained lower in diabetic tissues, compared to controls, expression of SRF increased in diabetic tissues in the second part of the year. These changes may need long time to develop, and, in line with earlier reports, it is possible that insulin treatment of DM rats once a week reduces possibility of EMT and development of renal fibrosis even in the long term.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Cell Biology