Human kidney organoids reveal the role of glutathione in Fabry disease

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Exp Mol Med. 2021 Oct 15. doi: 10.1038/s12276-021-00683-y. Online ahead of print.


Fabry disease is an X-linked lysosomal storage disease caused by a mutation in the galactosidase alpha (GLA) gene. Despite advances in therapeutic technologies, the lack of humanized experimental models of Fabry disease has limited the development of new therapies to cure the disease. Herein, we modeled Fabry disease using human inducible pluripotent stem cell (iPSC)-derived kidney organoids and the CRISPR-Cas9 genome-editing system. GLA-mutant human kidney organoids revealed deformed podocytes and tubular cells with accumulation of globotriaosylceramide (Gb3). Ultrastructural analysis showed abundant electron-dense granular deposits and electron-dense lamellate lipid-like deposits that formed concentric bodies (zebra bodies) in the cytoplasm of podocytes and tubules. The oxidative stress level was increased in GLA-mutant kidney organoids, and the increase was accompanied by apoptosis. Enzyme replacement treatment (ERT) with recombinant human α-Gal A decreased the Gb3 accumulation and oxidative stress, which resulted in amelioration of the deformed cellular structure of the GLA-mutant kidney organoids. Transcription profile analyses showed decreased glutathione (GSH) metabolism in GLA-mutant kidney organoids. GSH replacement treatment decreased oxidative stress and attenuated the structural deformity of the GLA-mutant kidney organoids. GSH treatment also increased the expression of podocyte and tubular markers and decreased apoptosis. In conclusion, GLA-mutant kidney organoids derived from human iPSCs are valuable tools for studying the mechanisms and developing novel therapeutic alternatives for Fabry disease.

PMID:34654880 | DOI:10.1038/s12276-021-00683-y

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