Background: Immunopathologic features predict renal function at baseline and follow-up in antineutrophil cytoplasmic antibody (ANCA)-Associated glomerulonephritis (GN). The interstitial infiltrate consists predominantly of T lymphocytes, but their pathophysiologic significance is unclear, especially in light of the success of B-cell-directed therapy. Methods: Renal biopsies from 33 patients treated with cyclophosphamide (CYC; n = 17) or rituximab (RTX; n = 16) in the RTX in ANCA-Associated vasculitis (RAVE) trial were classified according to the new ANCA GN classification. T-And B-cell infiltration in the interstitium was assessed by immunostaining for CD3 and CD20. Correlations of clinical and histologic parameters with renal function at set time points were examined. Results: The mean (SD) baseline estimated glomerular filtration rate was 36 (20) mL/min/1.73 m2. ANCA GN class distribution was 46% focal, 33% mixed, 12% sclerotic and 9% crescentic. The interstitial infiltrate consisted of >50% CD3 positive cells in 69% of biopsies, but >50% CD20 positive cells only in 8% of biopsies. In a multiple linear regression model, only baseline glomerular filtration rate (GFR) correlated with GFR at 6, 12, and 18 months. Interstitial B-And T-cell infiltrates had no significant impact on long-Term prognosis, independent of the treatment limb. A differential effect was noted only at 6 months, where a dense CD3 positive infiltrate predicted lower GFR in the RTX group and a CD20 positive infiltrate predicted higher GFR in the CYC group. Conclusions: In ANCA-Associated GN, the interstitial infiltrate contains mainly T lymphocytes. However, it is neither reflecting baseline renal function nor predictive of response to treatment, regardless of the immunosuppression regimen employed.
- Antineutrophil cytoplasmic antibody
- B cells
- T cells
ASJC Scopus subject areas