Increased proteinuria causes tubulointerstitial injury due to inflammation in chronic kidney disease (CKD). Iron restriction exhibits protective effects against renal dysfunction; however, its effects against protein overload-induced tubulointerstitial damage remain unclear. Here, we investigated dietary iron restriction effect on tubulointerstitial damage in mice with protein-overload tubulointerstitial injury. Renal tubulointerstitial injury in animal model was induced by intraperitoneal injection of an overdose of bovine serum albumin (BSA). We divided mice into three groups: normal saline + normal diet (ND), BSA + ND, and BSA + iron-restricted diet (IRD). BSA overload induced renal tubulointerstitial injury in the ND mice, which was ameliorated in the IRD mice. Inflammatory cytokines and extracellular matrix mRNA expression was upregulated in BSA + ND mice kidneys and was inhibited by IRD. BSA-induced increase in renal superoxide production, NADPH oxidase activity, and p22phox expression was diminished in the IRD mice. IRD suppression increased BSA-induced renal macrophage infiltration. Moreover, BSA mice exhibited nucleotide-binding oligomerisation domain-like receptor pyrin domain-containing protein (NLRP) inflammasome activation, which was inhibited by IRD. Ferrous iron increased in kidneys with BSA overload and was inhibited by IRD. Thus, iron restriction inhibited oxidative stress and inflammatory changes, contributing to the protective effect against BSA overload-induced tubulointerstitial injury.
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