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A definition, modern classification, and global epidemiology of primary glomerulonephritis 

A definition, modern classification, and global epidemiology of primary glomerulonephritis
Chapter:
A definition, modern classification, and global epidemiology of primary glomerulonephritis
Author(s):

Claudio Ponticelli

and Richard J Glassock

DOI:
10.1093/med/9780198784081.003.0001
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date: 07 April 2020

The term glomerulonephritis (GN) nominally indicates an inflammation of glomeruli. Not all the glomerular diseases necessarily show an inflammatory component at histologic examination. Accordingly, some investigators feel correct to limit the term GN only to those glomerular diseases that show signs of inflammation. On the other hand, primary GN diseases are caused by disorders of the adaptive immunity triggered by the activation of the innate immunity, with consequent production of an inflammatory micro-environment. This may legitimate to use the term GN to indicate all the diseases that mainly affect the glomeruli of both kidneys. Although the terms GN and glomerulopathy are interchangeable, GN is frequently used more from a traditional and historical perspective, rather than for accuracy. This chapter covers the classification and epidemiology of primary glomerulonephritis.

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