Glomerulonephritis refers to inflammation of the glomerulus, a very common cause of kidney disease.

Keywords: nephrotic syndrome; haematuria; proteinuria; kidney disease

Figure 1.

Photomicrograph of a normal glomerulus. The glomerular tuft is surrounded by Bowman's space where ultrafiltrate accumulates. Within the tuft the glomerular capillaries are supported by mesangial cells and extracellular matrix. Courtesy of Dr A. J. Howie.

Figure 2.

Immunoperoxidase staining showing granular deposition of IgG along the basement membrane in a photomicrograph of a renal biopsy from a patient with membranous nephropathy. Courtesy of Dr A. J. Howie.

Figure 3.

Compare with Figure 1. This photomicrograph is of a biopsy from a patient with vasculitic glomerulonephritis. There is thrombosis within glomerular capillary loops and inflammatory cells within Bowman's space (a crescent). Courtesy of Dr A. J. Howie.

Figure 4.

Immunofluorescence staining showing linear deposition of IgG along the basement membrane in a renal biopsy from a patient with Goodpasture disease. Courtesy of Dr A. J. Howie.



Cockwell P (1998) Primary small vessel vasculitis. Medicine 26: 20–24.

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Further Reading

Adu D (1996) Idiopathic glomerulonephritis. In: Weatherall D, Ledingham J and Warell D (eds) Oxford Textbook of Medicine. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Adu D, Luqmani R and Bacon P (1993) Polyarteritis, Wegener's granulomatosis and Churg–Strauss syndrome. In: Maddison PJ, Isenberg DI, Woo P and Glass DN (eds) Oxford Textbook of Rheumatology, vol. 2, pp. 846–859. Oxford: Oxford Medical Publications

Cameron J and Glassock R (1988) The Nephrotic Syndrome. New York: Marcel Dekker.

Cockwell P and Savage C (1997) Chemokines and their receptors in leukocyte trafficking and renal inflammation. Nephrology, Dialysis, Transplantation 12: 1307–1310.

Couser W (1993) Pathogenesis of glomerulonephritis. Kidney International 44: S19–S26.

Davison A, Cameron J, Grunfeld JP et al. (1998) Oxford Textbook of Clinical Nephrology. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Kincaid‐Smith P, d’Apice A and Atkins R (1978) Progress in Glomerulonephritis. New York: John Wiley & Sons.

Pusey CD (1999) The Treatment of Glomerulonephritis. Dordrecht, The Netherlands: Kluwer Academic Publishers.

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How to Cite close
Cockwell, Paul, and Adu, Dwomoa(Apr 2001) Glomerulonephritis. In: eLS. John Wiley & Sons Ltd, Chichester. [doi: 10.1038/npg.els.0002122]