Microorganisms 2020; 8(12): 1966 -

Neutrophil Gelatinase-Associated Lipocalin (NGAL) Is Related with the Proteinuria Degree and the Microscopic Kidney Findings in Leishmania-Infected Dogs.

Peris MP, Morales M, Ares-Gómez S, Esteban-Gil A, Gómez-Ochoa P, Gascon M, Moreno B, Castillo JA
Early diagnosis of renal damage in Leishmania infected dogs may allow appropriate treatments and prevent some deaths. This study investigates neutrophil gelatinase-associated lipocalin (NGAL) as a biomarker of kidney disease in dogs experimentally infected with Leishmania infantum. Serum, urine, and kidney samples were collected from 30 infected beagle dogs and six uninfected control dogs. Based on proteinuria and azotemia values, dogs were initially classified. NGAL was measured in urine and serum samples. Then, the urinary NGAL to creatinine ratio (uNGAL/C) was calculated. Kidney samples were taken for histopathological studies, and the dogs were classified according to the severity of glomerular and tubulointerstitial lesions. In Leishmania-infected dogs, the uNGAL/C was significantly higher in proteinuric non-azotemic dogs compared with non-proteinuric non-azotemic dogs (p = 0.038). Serum NGAL (sNGAL) concentration did not differ between groups. Microscopic studies revealed several degrees of glomerulonephritis and slight focal lymphoplasmacytic interstitial nephritis in 89% and 55% of infected dogs, respectively. Urinary protein to creatinine ratio (UPC) and uNGAL/C were significantly higher in dogs with affected glomeruli compared to infected dogs without renal lesions (p = 0.045 and p = 0.043, respectively). The results show that uNGAL/C correlates with proteinuria and the presence of moderate glomerular lesions in non-azotemic dogs experimentally infected with L. infantum.