Dual Inhibition of Classical Protein Kinase C-α and Protein Kinase C-β Isoforms Protects Against Experimental Murine Diabetic Nephropathy

  1. Matthias Meier1
  1. 1Clinic for Nephrology and Hypertension, Hannover Medical School, Hannover, Germany
  2. 2Phenos GmbH, Hannover, Germany
  1. Corresponding authors: Jan Menne, menne.jan{at}, and Hermann Haller, haller.hermann{at}
  1. J.M., N.S., J.-K.P., and M.M. contributed equally to this study.


Activation of protein kinase C (PKC) has been implicated in the pathogenesis of diabetic nephropathy with proteinuria and peritubular extracellular matrix production. We have previously shown that the PKC isoforms α and β mediate different cellular effects. PKC-β contributes to hyperglycemia-induced renal matrix production, whereby PKC-α is involved in the development of albuminuria. We further tested this hypothesis by deletion of both isoforms and used a PKC inhibitor. We analyzed the phenotype of nondiabetic and streptozotocin (STZ)-induced diabetic homozygous PKC-α/β double-knockout mice (PKC-α/β−/−). After 8 weeks of diabetes mellitus, the high-glucose–induced renal and glomerular hypertrophy as well as transforming growth factor-β1) and extracellular matrix production were diminished in the PKC-α/β−/− mice compared with wild-type controls. Urinary albumin/creatinine ratio also was significantly reduced, however, it was not completely abolished in diabetic PKC-α/β−/− mice. Treatment with CGP41252, which inhibits PKC-α and PKC-β, is able to prevent the development of albuminuria and to reduce existing albuminuria in type 1 (STZ model) or type 2 (db/db model) diabetic mice. These results support our hypothesis that PKC-α and PKC-β contribute to the pathogenesis of diabetic nephropathy, and that dual inhibition of the classical PKC isoforms is a suitable therapeutic strategy in the prevention and treatment of diabetic nephropathy.

  • Received May 11, 2012.
  • Accepted October 10, 2012.

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  1. Diabetes vol. 62 no. 4 1167-1174
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