A Nephrological View of the Classification of Vasculitis

  • Ronald J. Falk
  • J. Charles Jennette
Part of the Advances in Experimental Medicine and Biology book series (AEMB, volume 336)


From the nephrological perspective, immune mediated vascular inflammation in the kidney most commonly results in a necrotizing and crescentic glomerulonephritis. Based on immunohistologic findings this form of glomerular injury is separable into three distinct categories which include: 1) direct antibody binding to the glomerular capillary wall (e.g. anti-glomerular basement membrane disease); 2) immune complex deposition (e.g. systemic lupus erythematosis); or 3) the paucity of immune deposits (e.g. Wegener’s granulomatosis and polyarteritis nodosa). Each of these immunopathologic categories of vascular inflammation is associated with serologic markers (e.g. anti-glomerular basement membrane antibodies in Goodpasture’s syndrome, and anti-DNA antibodies in lupus, etc.). It is the pauci-immune category of disease which is associated with anti-neutrophil cytoplasmic autoantibodies (ANCA) (1–5). From the nephrologic perspective, ANCA are important as a serologic marker of a spectrum of disease, as an aid in classification and nosology, and as a potential factor in disease pathogenesis (6–10).


Vascular Inflammation Alveolar Hemorrhage Crescentic Glomerulonephritis Small Vessel Vasculitis Necrotizing Glomerulonephritis 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1993

Authors and Affiliations

  • Ronald J. Falk
    • 1
  • J. Charles Jennette
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of MedicineUniversity of North CarolinaChapel HillUSA
  2. 2.Department of PathologyUniversity of North CarolinaChapel HillUSA

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