Author(s): Barajas L, Powers KV
Abstract Share this page
Abstract The overlap of accumulations of autoradiographic grains (AAGs) on profiles of the thick ascending limb of Henle (TALH) was measured in autoradiograms of sections from rat kidneys with monoaminergic nerves labeled by means of tritiated norepinephrine. The amount of AAG overlap was used as an indirect means of quantifying innervation along the TALHs of superficial, mid-cortical, and juxtamedullary nephrons. The density of innervation along the TALH showed nephron heterogeneity; the juxtamedullary nephrons with a high pre- and postjuxtaglomerular apparatus (JGA) TALH density of innervation and the upper and midcortical nephrons with high TALH innervation densities at the level of the JGA. The pre-JGA TALH of the juxtamedullary nephrons had a significantly higher (P less than 0.001) density of innervation than the midcortical or superficial nephrons. The TALHs of juxtamedullary nephrons were found to have substantially more innervation than the TALHs of the other nephrons. For all three populations of nephrons, the pre-JGA TALH had the greatest amount of innervation. Neural regulation of TALH function would occur mainly along the pre-JGA and level of the JGA TALH. This regulation would increase TALH NaCl reabsorption (decrease luminal NaCl concentration) and therefore influence 1) the urinary concentrating mechanism, and 2) renin secretion via the macula densa mechanism. The innervation of the TALH was predominantly associated with the vasculature of the TALH's own nephron. However, innervation associated with medullary ray capillary beds from deeper nephrons was observed on pre-JGA TALHs from superficial and midcortical nephrons.
This article was published in Am J Physiol
and referenced in Anatomy & Physiology: Current Research