Proportionate increase of fibrinogen and albumin synthesis in nephrotic patients: measurements with stable isotopes

M G de Sain-van der Velden, G A Kaysen, K de Meer, F Stellaard, H A Voorbij, D J Reijngoud, T J Rabelink, H A Koomans
Kidney International 1998, 53 (1): 181-8
Hyperfibrinogenemia is a common feature of the nephrotic syndrome, and contributes to increased tendency for thrombosis and atherosclerosis. Its genesis is not certain, but the increase in liver fibrinogen mRNA in nephrotic rats indicates increased synthesis. Data in humans are scarce. We presently compared synthesis rates of fibrinogen and albumin in nephrotic adults (N = 7; plasma albumin 22.3 +/- 0.7 g/liter, proteinuria 12 g/day) and healthy control subjects (N = 8) using a primed/continuous infusion of the stable isotope L-[1-13C]valine for six hours. Absolute synthesis rate (ASR) of fibrinogen was 31 +/- 3 mg/kg/day in nephrotic subjects and 21 +/- 1 mg/kg/day in control subjects (P < 0.05), and positively correlated with plasma fibrinogen (P = 0.0317). The plasma fibrinogen pool was disproportionately increased in the nephrotic patients (271 +/- 30 mg/kg) compared to the controls (126 +/- 8 mg/kg), suggesting decreased fractional catabolic rate as well. The ASR of albumin was increased from 71 +/- 4 mg/kg/day in the controls to 160 +/- 19 mg/kg/day in the patients (P < 0.0001), and strongly correlated with the ASR of fibrinogen (P = 0.0046). Plasma alpha 2-macroglobulin was also elevated and correlated with the albumin synthesis rate, whereas plasma serum amyloid A and C-reactive protein were not elevated. These data suggest that in nephrotic patients the increased albumin synthesis is associated with an increase in synthesis of a specific and coordinated group of proteins, among which is fibrinogen.

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