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Renal System III

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Christopher Perumalla

Glomerular FiltrationFiltration is the first step in urine formation Filtration involves transfer of fluid from the blood into the renal tubule Filtration is a relatively non specific process It creates a filtrate much like that of the interstitial fluid or plasma except the plasma does not have plasma proteins Therefore filtrate under normal circumstances consist of water and dissolved solutes Filtration will not allow plasma proteins and blood cells from being filtered Therefore at the end of filtration we have a protein free plasma called the glomerular filtrate which is filtered at a phenomenal rate of 125 mLmin or 180L per day There are two key players in filtration Structure of GlomerulusThere are three layers through which substances need to pass through in the process of filtration Fluid leaving the capillaries need to pass through capillary pores or fenestra then through the basement membrane and finally through the filtration slits These three layers form the filtration barrier or glonerular membrane Glomerular capillary wall The glomerular capillary wall is made up of endothelial cells which are perforated by pores called the fenestra These fenestra are large enough to allow fluid and small solutes to pass through them but are small enough to exclude blood cells and plasma proteins from passing through them Glomerular fenestra are very permeable more than the fenestra in skeletal muscle capillaries Basement membrane The basement membrane is acellular and separates the capillary endothelium from the epithelial lining of the Bowmans capsule The basement membrane is composed of collagen which provides the structural strength and glycoproteins which discourage protein filtration because of their negative chargeEpithelial liningThese epithelial cells have specialized extensions of food processes thus giving them the name podocytes As fluid moves out of the glomerular capillaries it passes through the gaps in the podocytes called slit pores The size of filtration slits can be varied and are regulated by slit diaphragms
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