The protective effect of human renal sinus fat on glomerular cells is reversed by the hepatokine fetuin-A

R Wagner, J Machann, M Guthoff, P P Nawroth, S Nadalin, M A Saleem, N Heyne, A Königsrainer, F Fend, F Schick, A Fritsche, N Stefan, H-U Häring, E Schleicher, D I Siegel-Axel

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Renal sinus fat (RSF) is a perivascular fat compartment located around renal arteries. In this in vitro and in vivo study we hypothesized that the hepatokine fetuin-A may impair renal function in non alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) by altering inflammatory signalling in RSF. To study effects of the crosstalk between fetuin-A, RSF and kidney, human renal sinus fat cells (RSFC) were isolated and cocultured with human endothelial cells (EC) or podocytes (PO). RSFC caused downregulation of proinflammatory and upregulation of regenerative factors in cocultured EC and PO, indicating a protective influence of RFSC. However, fetuin-A inverted these benign effects of RSFC from an anti- to a proinflammatory status. RSF was quantified by magnetic resonance imaging and liver fat content by 1H-MR spectroscopy in 449 individuals at risk for type 2 diabetes. Impaired renal function was determined via urinary albumin/creatinine-ratio (uACR). RSF did not correlate with uACR in subjects without NAFLD (n = 212, p = 0.94), but correlated positively in subjects with NAFLD (n = 105, p = 0.0005). Estimated glomerular filtration rate (eGRF) was inversely correlated with RSF, suggesting lower eGFR for subjects with higher RSF (r = 0.24, p < 0.0001). In conclusion, our data suggest that in the presence of NAFLD elevated fetuin-A levels may impair renal function by RSF-induced proinflammatory signalling in glomerular cells.
Original languageEnglish
Article number2261
Number of pages12
JournalScientific Reports
Early online date23 May 2017
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 23 May 2017


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