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Special Issue "Rho Family Proteins and Their Regulators in Kidney Physiology and Pathology"

A special issue of International Journal of Molecular Sciences (ISSN 1422-0067). This special issue belongs to the section "Biochemistry".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (31 January 2021).

Special Issue Editors

Dr. Katalin Szászi
Guest Editor
Keenan Research Centre for Biomedical Science, Toronto, Canada
Interests: Tubular epithelial biology; Rho family small GTPases; tight junctions; inflammatory signalling; guanine nucleotide exchange factors; claudins; epithelial-mesenchymal transition
Dr. Andras Kapus
Guest Editor
Keenan Research Centre for Biomedical Science, Toronto, Canada
Interests: renal fibrosis; epithelium; profibrotic epithelial phenotype; transcription factors; Myocardin-related transcription factor; Yap/TAZ signaling; cytoskeleton; fibrogenic cytokines; primary cilium; polycystic kidney disease
Dr. Tomoko Takano
Guest Editor
Department of Medicine, Division of Nephrology, Faculty of Medicine, McGill University
Interests: nephrotic syndrome; proteinuria; podocytes; Rho-GTPases; cytoskeleton

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Rho GTPase proteins form a subgroup of the Ras superfamily. In mammals, this group consists of 20 members that can be divided into subfamilies, including the best characterized Rac, Cdc42, and RhoA subfamilies as well as the lesser known groups of Rnd, RhoD/F, RhoH, RhoU/V, RhoBTB, and RhoT proteins. These proteins are at the center of an ever-increasing array of vital biological processes. The best studied members, RhoA, Rac1, and Cdc42, were initially characterized as central regulators of actin dynamics. Members of the Rho family subsequently emerged as vital orchestrators of diverse general cells functions, including gene transcription, vesicular trafficking, cell cycle progression, migration, polarity and differentiation control, as well as more specialized functions such as the control of enzymes generating reactive oxygen species. These diverse downstream effects are achieved through a multitude of effectors. In fact, Rho proteins and their regulators and effectors form complex, highly plastic, intertwined signaling networks. We have only started unraveling the details of how regulatory proteins finetune stimulus-specific Rho GTPase activation, selectively connecting a multitude of regulatory inputs to specific effectors. Detailed characterization of the spatiotemporal control and coordination of these networks will yield improved understanding of their physiological and pathological roles.

In recent years, our understanding of the vital roles of the Rho family in kidney biology has significantly increased, although our knowledge is mostly limited to the best characterized members of this large family. Accumulating evidence now implicates many Rho protein-dependent pathways in various kidney diseases, including glomerular diseases, kidney fibrosis, and developmental disorders. The aim of this Special Issue is to collect original contributions and review articles on all aspects of research on Rho family GTPases, as well as their regulators and effectors, in the broad context of kidney biology and pathology.

Suggested topics include but are not limited to research exploring the role and regulation of Rho proteins, regulators, and effectors in:

Podocyte biology

Tubular transport and its disorders

Glomerular diseases

Acute kidney injury

Inflammatory processes

Chronic kidney disease and fibrosis

Diabetic nephropathy

Polycystic kidney disease

Dr. Katalin Szászi
Dr. Andras Kapus
Dr. Tomoko Takano
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. International Journal of Molecular Sciences is an international peer-reviewed open access semimonthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. There is an Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal. For details about the APC please see here. Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.


  • Rho family small GTPases
  • Rho-related signalling in renal cells
  • Renal (patho)physiology
  • acute and chronic kidney disease
  • hereditary kidney diseases
  • glomerulopathy
  • diabetic nephropathy

Published Papers

There is no accepted submissions to this special issue at this moment.
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