Test Catalog

Test ID: ALPRT    
Alport (Collagen IV Alpha 5 and Alpha 2) Immunofluorescent Stain, Renal Biopsy

Useful For Suggests clinical disorders or settings where the test may be helpful

Assisting in the diagnosis of hereditary nephritis (Alport syndrome)

Clinical Information Discusses physiology, pathophysiology, and general clinical aspects, as they relate to a laboratory test

Alport syndrome is a hereditary disease of basement membrane collagen type IV. Variants in collagen IV alpha genes cause characteristic abnormal immunofluorescence staining patterns within the glomerular basement membrane. Alport syndrome is characterized by hematuria, proteinuria, progressive renal failure, and high-tone sensorineural hearing loss.

Reference Values Describes reference intervals and additional information for interpretation of test results. May include intervals based on age and sex when appropriate. Intervals are Mayo-derived, unless otherwise designated. If an interpretive report is provided, the reference value field will state this.

An interpretive report will be provided.

Interpretation Provides information to assist in interpretation of the test results

This test, (when not accompanied by a pathology consultation request) will be reported as: 1) normal pattern, 2) consistent with X-linked hereditary nephritis, or 3) consistent with autosomal hereditary nephritis.


If additional interpretation or analysis is needed, request PATHC / Pathology Consultation along with this test and send the corresponding renal pathology light microscopy and immunofluorescence (IF) slides (or IF images on a CD), electron microscopy images (prints or CD), and the pathology report.

Cautions Discusses conditions that may cause diagnostic confusion, including improper specimen collection and handling, inappropriate test selection, and interfering substances

Approximately one-third of patients with established hereditary nephritis based on typical ultrastructural findings and family history show loss of glomerular basement membrane or epidermal basement membrane staining for the alpha 5 chain of type IV collagen. Therefore, a normal staining pattern does not exclude the diagnosis of hereditary nephritis.


Because alpha 3 and alpha 4 chains of type IV collagen are not expressed in the epidermal basement membranes, patients with autosomal hereditary nephritis have preserved staining for alpha 5 on epidermal basement membranes and, therefore, skin biopsy cannot exclude autosomal hereditary nephritis.

Clinical Reference Recommendations for in-depth reading of a clinical nature

1. Kagawa M, Kishiro Y, Naito I, et al: Epitope-defined monoclonal antibodies against type-IV collagen for diagnosis of Alport's syndrome. Nephrol Dial Transplant. 1997 Jun;12(6):1238-1241

2. Hashimura Y, Nozu K, Nakanishi K, et al: Milder clinical aspects of X-linked Alport syndrome in men positive for the collagen IV alpha 5 chain. Kidney Int. 2014;85(5):1208-1213

3. Kamiyoshi N, Nozu K, Fu XJ, et al: Genetic, clinical, and pathologic backgrounds of patients with autosomal dominant Alport syndrome. Clin J Am Soc Nephrol. 2016 Aug 8;11(8):1441-1449

4. Said SM, Fidler ME, Valeri AM, et al: Negative staining for COL4A5 correlates with worse prognosis and more severe ultrastructural alterations in males with Alport syndrome. Kidney Int Rep. 2017;2(1):44-52

Special Instructions Library of PDFs including pertinent information and forms related to the test