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South African Journal of Child Health

On-line version ISSN 1999-7671
Print version ISSN 1994-3032


GUMEDE, N Z; NAICKER, T  and  BHIMMA, R. Basic fibroblast growth factors as a biomarker of focal segmental glomerulosclerosis in HIV-positive and HIV-negative children. S. Afr. j. child health [online]. 2020, vol.14, n.2, pp.62-65. ISSN 1999-7671.

BACKGROUND. HIV infection can lead to the development of HIV-associated nephropathy (HIVAN) with the majority of patients progressing to end-stage kidney disease. Previous studies have recognised basic fibroblast growth factor (bFGF) as a biomarker for HIVAN, since significant levels of bFGF low-affinity receptors have been found in the kidneys of HIV-infected children. OBJECTIVE. To assess the association between bFGF and kidney disease in the development of focal segmental glomerulosclerosis (FSGS) in HIV-positive and negative children. METHODS. The study group consisted of 31 children; HIVAN (n=11) and idiopathic FSGS (n=20). The control group consisted of both HIV-positive (n=20) and HIV-negative (n=20) children with no kidney disease. Serum samples from all patients in both the study and control groups were analysed for bFGF. RESULTS. The concentration of bFGF was higher, in comparison with idiopathic FSGS children, in HIVAN children (p=0.0167). There was also a significant elevation of serum bFGF levels in children with HIVAN when compared with HIV-positive (p=0.0288) and HIV-negative (p=0.0043) control groups. CONCLUSION. This study demonstrated statistically significant differences between bFGF levels in children with HIVAN and a control group, although it failed to distinguish significant differences in bFGF levels between HIVAN and idiopathic FSGS children.

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