Mycophenolate Mofetil Ameliorates Arteriolopathy and Decreases Transforming Growth Factor-β1 in Chronic Cyclosporine Nephrotoxicity

Fuad S. Shihab, William M. Bennett, Hong Yi, Seung Ok Choi, Takeshi F. Andoh

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

45 Scopus citations


Afferent arteriolopathy is the most characteristic lesion of chronic cyclosporine (CsA) nephrotoxicity. We investigated the effect of therapeutic doses of mycophenolate mofetil (MMF) in a model of chronic CsA nephrotoxicity where transforming growth factor-β (TGF-β) was shown to play a central role. Rats treated with vehicle, MMF 10 mg/kg/day, CsA 10 mg/kg/day or CsA + MMF were sacrificed at 7 or 28 days. Physiologic and histologic changes were studied in addition to TGF-β1 mRNA and protein expressions, and mRNA expression of plasminogen activator inhibitor-1 (PAI-1) and the extracellular matrix (ECM) proteins biglycan and types I and IV collagen. While MMF markedly ameliorated afferent arteriolopathy, it had no significant effect on interstitial fibrosis and tubular atrophy. In addition, MMF treatment reduced both TGF-β1 mRNA and protein levels by 39% and 32%, respectively (p < 0.05 vs. CsA only). The expression of the ECM proteins followed that of TGF-β1 and was significantly decreased with MMF; a similar effect was observed with PAI-1, suggesting an increase in ECM degradation. These results suggest that MMF exerts a beneficial effect on CsA arteriolopathy and that it decreases TGF-β1. While this drug combination may be useful clinically, long-term studies are needed to determine if MMF has a lasting benefit.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1550-1559
Number of pages10
JournalAmerican Journal of Transplantation
Issue number12
StatePublished - Dec 2003
Externally publishedYes


  • Arteriolopathy
  • Biglycan
  • Chronic nephrotoxicity
  • Collagen
  • Cyclosporine
  • Extracellular matrix
  • Fibrosis
  • Mycophenolate mofetil
  • Plasminogen activator inhibitor-1
  • Rats
  • Transforming growth factor-β1

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology and Allergy
  • Transplantation
  • Pharmacology (medical)


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