T-bet deficiency attenuates renal injury in experimental crescentic glomerulonephritis

Richard Kwok Sing Phoon, Arthur Richard Kitching, Dragana Odobasic, Lynelle Karyn Jones, Timothy John Semple, Stephen Roger Holdsworth

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

51 Citations (Scopus)


T-bet is a transcription factor that is essential for T helper (Th)1 lineage commitment and optimal IFN-gamma production by CD4(+) T cells. We examined the role of T-bet in the development of experimental crescentic glomerulonephritis, which is induced by Th1-predominant, delayed-type hypersensitivity-like responses directed against a nephritogenic antigen. Anti-glomerular basement membrane (GBM) glomerulonephritis was induced in T-bet(-/-) and wild-type C57BL/6 mice. Compared with wild-type controls, renal injury was attenuated in T-bet(-/-) mice with glomerulonephritis, evidenced by less proteinuria, glomerular crescents, and tubulointerstitial inflammation. Accumulation of glomerular CD4(+) T cells and macrophages was decreased, and was associated with reduced intrarenal expression of the potent Th1 chemoattractants CCL5/RANTES and CXCL9/Mig. Supporting the pro-inflammatory nature of T-bet signaling, assessment of systemic immunity confirmed that T-bet(-/-) mice had a reduction in Th1 immunity. The kinetic profile of T-bet mRNA in wild-type mice supported the hypothesis that T-bet deficiency attenuates renal injury in part by shifting the Th1/Th2 balance away from a Th1 phenotype. Expression of renal and splenic IL-17A, characteristically expressed by the Th17 subset of effector T cells, which have been implicated in the pathogenesis of autoimmune disease, was increased in T-bet(-/-) mice. We conclude that T-bet directs Th1 responses that induce renal injury in experimental crescentic glomerulonephritis.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)477 - 485
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of the American Society of Nephrology
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2008

Cite this