Renal microangiopathies and membranoproliferative GN (MPGN) can manifest similar clinical presentations and histology, suggesting the possibility of a common underlying mechanism in some cases. Here, we performed homozygosity mapping and whole exome sequencing in a Turkish consanguineous family and identified DGKE gene variants as the cause of amembranoproliferative-like glomerularmicroangiopathy. Furthermore, we identified two additional DGKE variants in a cohort of 142 unrelated patients diagnosed with membranoproliferative GN. This gene encodes the diacylglycerol kinase DGK, which is an intracellular lipid kinase that phosphorylates diacylglycerol to phosphatidic acid. Immunofluorescence confocal microscopy demonstrated that mouse and rat Dgk colocalizes with the podocyte marker WT1 but not with the endothelial marker CD31. Patch-clamp experiments in human embryonic kidney (HEK293) cells showed that DGK variants affect the intracellular concentration of diacylglycerol. Taken together, these results not only identify a genetic cause of a glomerular microangiopathy but also suggest that the phosphatidylinositol cycle, which requires DGKE, is critical to the normal function of podocytes.
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