Global analysis reveals the complexity of the human glomerular extracellular matrix

Rachel Lennon, Adam Byron, Jonathan D Humphries, Michael J Randles, Alex Carisey, Stephanie Murphy, David Knight, Paul E Brenchley, Roy Zent, Martin J Humphries

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The glomerulus contains unique cellular and extracellular matrix (ECM) components, which are required for intact barrier function. Studies of the cellular components have helped to build understanding of glomerular disease; however, the full composition and regulation of glomerular ECM remains poorly understood. We used mass spectrometry-based proteomics of enriched ECM extracts for a global analysis of human glomerular ECM in vivo and identified a tissue-specific proteome of 144 structural and regulatory ECM proteins. This catalog includes all previously identified glomerular components plus many new and abundant components. Relative protein quantification showed a dominance of collagen IV, collagen I, and laminin isoforms in the glomerular ECM together with abundant collagen VI and TINAGL1. Protein network analysis enabled the creation of a glomerular ECM interactome, which revealed a core of highly connected structural components. More than one half of the glomerular ECM proteome was validated using colocalization studies and data from the Human Protein Atlas. This study yields the greatest number of ECM proteins relative to previous investigations of whole glomerular extracts, highlighting the importance of sample enrichment. It also shows that the composition of glomerular ECM is far more complex than previously appreciated and suggests that many more ECM components may contribute to glomerular development and disease processes. The mass spectrometry proteomics data have been deposited to the ProteomeXchange Consortium with the dataset identifier PXD000456.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)939-51
JournalJournal of the American Society of Nephrology
Issue number5
Early online date16 Jan 2014
Publication statusPublished - May 2014


  • Adult
  • Collagen Type VI
  • Extracellular Matrix Proteins
  • Gene Ontology
  • Humans
  • Kidney Glomerulus
  • Lipocalins
  • Male
  • Mass Spectrometry
  • Middle Aged
  • Protein Interaction Maps
  • Proteome


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