Comparison of measurements of anti-PLA2R antibodies in Japanese patients with membranous nephropathy using in-house and commercial ELISA

  • Hajime Kaga
  • Atsushi KomatsudaEmail author
  • Soh Yamamoto
  • Tadashi Kikuchi
  • Mika Kamata
  • Akiko Sato
  • Masafumi Odaka
  • Shin-ichi Yokota
  • Naoto Takahashi
  • Hideki Wakui
Original article



The prevalence of antibodies against M-type anti-phospholipase A2 receptor (PLA2R) was reported to be ~ 70–80% in early studies on idiopathic membranous nephropathy (iMN) cohorts from Western countries, China, and Korea, and ~ 50% in recent studies on two Japanese iMN cohorts.


We developed an in-house enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) for the detection of anti-PLA2R antibodies, and examined sera from 217 patients with iMN, 22 patients with secondary MN (sMN), and 50 healthy individuals. All patients and healthy individuals were Japanese. The relationships between levels of anti-PLA2R antibodies and clinical parameters were analyzed. Serum samples were also tested using a standardized commercial ELISA (Euroimmun, Germany).


In our ELISA, OD values greater than the mean + 3 standard deviation of healthy subjects were considered to be positive for anti-PLA2R antibodies. Of the patients with iMN, 33.6% (73/217) were positive, but all sMN patients were negative. Our ELISA and the Euroimmun ELISA had a high concordance (93.5%). The proportion of patients with nephrotic syndrome was significantly higher in anti-PLA2R antibody-positive patients than in antibody-negative patients (65.8 vs. 37.5%, P < 0.001). Levels of anti-PLA2R antibodies were significantly correlated with levels of urinary protein and serum albumin (P = 0.004 and P < 0.001, respectively).


The prevalence of anti-PLA2R antibodies in our Japanese iMN cohort was lower than that in the previous studies from other countries and other Japanese institutes. The low prevalence of antibodies may be related with the characteristics of enrolled patients with mild proteinuria and undetectable antibody levels.


Enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay Japanese cohort Membranous nephropathy M-type phospholipase A2 receptor 



This work was supported in part by a research grant from Cosmic Corporation, Tokyo, Japan.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

All the authors have declared no competing interests.

Ethical approval

All procedures performed in studies involving human participants were in accordance with the ethical standards of the institutional and/or national research committee at which the studies were conducted (IRB approval number 1026), and with the 1964 Helsinki declaration and its later amendments or comparable ethical standards.

Informed consent

Informed consent was obtained from all individual participants included in the study.

Supplementary material

10157_2019_1712_MOESM1_ESM.docx (16 kb)
Supplementary material 1 (DOCX 16 KB)


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Copyright information

© Japanese Society of Nephrology 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Hajime Kaga
    • 1
  • Atsushi Komatsuda
    • 1
    Email author
  • Soh Yamamoto
    • 2
  • Tadashi Kikuchi
    • 3
  • Mika Kamata
    • 4
  • Akiko Sato
    • 4
  • Masafumi Odaka
    • 4
  • Shin-ichi Yokota
    • 2
  • Naoto Takahashi
    • 1
  • Hideki Wakui
    • 4
  1. 1.Department of Hematology, Nephrology, and RheumatologyAkita University Graduate School of MedicineAkita CityJapan
  2. 2.Department of MicrobiologySapporo Medical University School of MedicineSapporo CityJapan
  3. 3.Technical Support & Marketing Section, Sales DepartmentCosmic CorporationTokyoJapan
  4. 4.Department of Life ScienceAkita University Graduate School of Engineering ScienceAkita CityJapan

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