Summary: The functional units of the kidney, consisting of the glomerulus and the attached tubule.

Top Publications

  1. Lindström N, Hohenstein P, Davies J. Nephrons require Rho-kinase for proximal-distal polarity development. Sci Rep. 2013;3:2692 pubmed publisher
    ..We show that Rho-kinase is essential for the morphogenesis of nephrons, specifically for correct cell orientation and volume...
  2. Sims Lucas S, Cusack B, Baust J, Eswarakumar V, Masatoshi H, Takeuchi A, et al. Fgfr1 and the IIIc isoform of Fgfr2 play critical roles in the metanephric mesenchyme mediating early inductive events in kidney development. Dev Dyn. 2011;240:240-9 pubmed publisher
    ..Beyond E12.5, Fgfr1(Mes-/-)Fgfr2IIIc-/- mice had no renal tissue. In conclusion, Fgfr2IIIc and Fgfr1 in kidney mesenchyme (together) are critical for normal early renal development. ..
  3. Benz K, Campean V, Cordasic N, Karpe B, Neuhuber W, Mall G, et al. Early glomerular alterations in genetically determined low nephron number. Am J Physiol Renal Physiol. 2011;300:F521-30 pubmed publisher
  4. McNamara B, Diouf B, Douglas Denton R, Hughson M, Hoy W, Bertram J. A comparison of nephron number, glomerular volume and kidney weight in Senegalese Africans and African Americans. Nephrol Dial Transplant. 2010;25:1514-20 pubmed publisher
    ..This may mark exposure to environmental stressors or hereditary traits concentrated in the population's relocation to North America. ..
  5. Walker K, Cai X, Caruana G, Thomas M, Bertram J, Kett M. High nephron endowment protects against salt-induced hypertension. Am J Physiol Renal Physiol. 2012;303:F253-8 pubmed publisher
    ..This is the first study to examine the physiological characteristics of a model of high nephron number, and the findings are consistent with this phenotype providing protection against chronic, but not acute, hypertensive insults. ..
  6. Singh R, Denton K, Bertram J, Dowling J, Moritz K. Urine-concentrating defects exacerbate with age in male offspring with a low-nephron endowment. Am J Physiol Renal Physiol. 2011;301:F1168-76 pubmed publisher
    ..Renal insufficiency due to a low-nephron endowment increases the risk of hypertension and chronic renal disease and may incur greater vulnerability to physiological challenges such as water deprivation as observed in the uni-x animals. ..
  7. Ackermann D, Gresko N, Carrel M, Loffing Cueni D, Habermehl D, Gomez Sanchez C, et al. In vivo nuclear translocation of mineralocorticoid and glucocorticoid receptors in rat kidney: differential effect of corticosteroids along the distal tubule. Am J Physiol Renal Physiol. 2010;299:F1473-85 pubmed publisher
    ..Differential regulation of MR and GR may alter the level of heterodimerization of the receptors and hence may contribute to the complexity of corticosteroid effects on ASDN function. ..
  8. Costantini F, Kopan R. Patterning a complex organ: branching morphogenesis and nephron segmentation in kidney development. Dev Cell. 2010;18:698-712 pubmed publisher
    ..In this review, we will consider their embryological origin and the genes controlling their morphogenesis, patterning, and differentiation, with a focus on recent advances in several areas. ..
  9. Stockand J, Mironova E, Bugaj V, Rieg T, Insel P, Vallon V, et al. Purinergic inhibition of ENaC produces aldosterone escape. J Am Soc Nephrol. 2010;21:1903-11 pubmed publisher
    ..These data suggest that control of ENaC by purinergic signaling is necessary for aldosterone escape. ..

More Information


  1. Castañeda Bueno M, Arroyo J, Gamba G. Independent regulation of Na+ and K+ balance by the kidney. Med Princ Pract. 2012;21:101-14 pubmed publisher
  2. Romagnani P, Lasagni L, Remuzzi G. Renal progenitors: an evolutionary conserved strategy for kidney regeneration. Nat Rev Nephrol. 2013;9:137-46 pubmed publisher
    ..Understanding the mechanisms that drive renal progenitor growth and differentiation represent the key step for modulating this potential for therapeutic purposes. ..
  3. Waldert M, Waalkes S, Klatte T, Kuczyk M, Weibl P, Schuller G, et al. External validation of the preoperative anatomical classification for prediction of complications related to nephron-sparing surgery. World J Urol. 2010;28:531-5 pubmed publisher
    ..034). The PADUA score is a reliable tool to preoperatively predict the risk of complications. In addition, it might be beneficial for a more objective patient selection for laparoscopic surgery and teaching NSS. ..
  4. Gray S, Denton K, Cullen McEwen L, Bertram J, Moritz K. Prenatal exposure to alcohol reduces nephron number and raises blood pressure in progeny. J Am Soc Nephrol. 2010;21:1891-902 pubmed publisher
    ..Taken together, these data demonstrate that acute prenatal ethanol exposure reduces the number of nephrons, possibly as a result of inhibited ureteric branching morphogenesis, and that these changes affect adult ..
  5. Forbes M, Thornhill B, Chevalier R. Proximal tubular injury and rapid formation of atubular glomeruli in mice with unilateral ureteral obstruction: a new look at an old model. Am J Physiol Renal Physiol. 2011;301:F110-7 pubmed publisher
  6. Kandasamy Y, Smith R, Wright I. Oligonephropathy of prematurity. Am J Perinatol. 2012;29:115-20 pubmed publisher
    ..The cost implications to a comprehensive program, impact of early identification, and strategies to improve outcomes in this population are needed. ..
  7. Stelloh C, Allen K, Mattson D, Lerch Gaggl A, Reddy S, El Meanawy A. Prematurity in mice leads to reduction in nephron number, hypertension, and proteinuria. Transl Res. 2012;159:80-9 pubmed publisher
    ..Premature mice, delivered 1 and 2 days early, have 17.4 ± 2.3% (n = 6) and 23.6 ± 2% (n = 10) fewer nephrons, respectively, when compared with full-term animals (12,252 ± 571 nephrons/kidney, n = 10)...
  8. Barak H, Huh S, Chen S, Jeanpierre C, Martinovic J, Parisot M, et al. FGF9 and FGF20 maintain the stemness of nephron progenitors in mice and man. Dev Cell. 2012;22:1191-207 pubmed publisher
    ..These findings identify a long-sought-after critical component of the nephron stem cell niche and hold promise for long-term culture and utilization of these progenitors in vitro. ..
  9. Peti Peterdi J, Harris R. Macula densa sensing and signaling mechanisms of renin release. J Am Soc Nephrol. 2010;21:1093-6 pubmed publisher
    ..Here, we discuss recent advances in understanding macula densa sensing and suggest these cells, in addition to salt, also sense various chemical and metabolic signals in the tubular environment that directly trigger renin release. ..
  10. Myrie S, McKnight L, Van Vliet B, Bertolo R. Low birth weight is associated with reduced nephron number and increased blood pressure in adulthood in a novel spontaneous intrauterine growth-restricted model in Yucatan miniature Swine. Neonatology. 2011;100:380-6 pubmed publisher
    ..Adult IUGR pigs also had higher BP (diastolic BP: 93.8 ± 5.5 vs. 90.0 ± 8.7 mm Hg, p < 0.05) and 43% fewer nephrons per kidney (p < 0.05)...
  11. Bertram J, Douglas Denton R, Diouf B, Hughson M, Hoy W. Human nephron number: implications for health and disease. Pediatr Nephrol. 2011;26:1529-33 pubmed publisher
    ..1 million. Given that no new nephrons are formed in human kidneys after approximately 36 weeks' gestation, much interest has focused on renal function ..
  12. Karner C, Das A, Ma Z, Self M, Chen C, Lum L, et al. Canonical Wnt9b signaling balances progenitor cell expansion and differentiation during kidney development. Development. 2011;138:1247-57 pubmed publisher
    The mammalian kidney is composed of thousands of individual epithelial tubules known as nephrons. Deficits in nephron number are associated with myriad diseases ranging from complete organ failure to congenital hypertension...
  13. Di Giovanni V, Alday A, Chi L, Mishina Y, Rosenblum N. Alk3 controls nephron number and androgen production via lineage-specific effects in intermediate mesoderm. Development. 2011;138:2717-27 pubmed publisher
    ..Together, these results demonstrate a requirement for Alk3 in distinct progenitor cell populations derived from the intermediate mesoderm. ..
  14. Lauridsen T, Vase H, Starklint J, Bech J, Pedersen E. Protein-enriched diet increases water absorption via the aquaporin-2 water channels in healthy humans. Nephrol Dial Transplant. 2010;25:2502-10 pubmed publisher
    ..The increased u-AQP2 might be due to a reduced prostaglandin level. The increase in renal sodium excretion seems to be mediated in another part of the nephron than the epithelial sodium channels. ..
  15. Schild L. The epithelial sodium channel and the control of sodium balance. Biochim Biophys Acta. 2010;1802:1159-65 pubmed publisher
    ..These in vivo physiological studies presently constitute a major challenge for our understanding of the regulation of ENaC to maintain the Na(+) balance. ..
  16. Nagle M, Truong D, Dnyanmote A, Ahn S, Eraly S, Wu W, et al. Analysis of three-dimensional systems for developing and mature kidneys clarifies the role of OAT1 and OAT3 in antiviral handling. J Biol Chem. 2011;286:243-51 pubmed publisher
    ..Because the HIV antivirals are used in pregnant women, the results may also help in understanding how these drugs are handled by developing organs. ..
  17. El Kares R, Manolescu D, Lakhal Chaieb L, Montpetit A, Zhang Z, Bhat P, et al. A human ALDH1A2 gene variant is associated with increased newborn kidney size and serum retinoic acid. Kidney Int. 2010;78:96-102 pubmed publisher
    ..As maternal vitamin A deficiency is widespread in developing countries and may compromise availability of retinol for fetal RA synthesis, our study suggests that the ALDH1A2 rs7169289(G) variant might be protective for such individuals. ..
  18. Singh R, Denton K, Bertram J, Jefferies A, Moritz K. Reduced nephron endowment due to fetal uninephrectomy impairs renal sodium handling in male sheep. Clin Sci (Lond). 2010;118:669-80 pubmed publisher
    ..We hypothesized this may be attributable to impaired sodium homoeostasis by the remaining nephrons. The present study investigated whether a nephron deficit, induced by fetal uninephrectomy at 100 days gestation (..
  19. Holtzclaw J, Cornelius R, Hatcher L, Sansom S. Coupled ATP and potassium efflux from intercalated cells. Am J Physiol Renal Physiol. 2011;300:F1319-26 pubmed publisher
    ..These data demonstrate coupled electrochemical efflux between K and ATP as part of the mechanism for ?-induced ATP release in IC. ..
  20. Boyle S, Kim M, Valerius M, McMahon A, Kopan R. Notch pathway activation can replace the requirement for Wnt4 and Wnt9b in mesenchymal-to-epithelial transition of nephron stem cells. Development. 2011;138:4245-54 pubmed publisher
    ..These functions are carried out by specialized epithelial cells organized into tubules called nephrons. Each of these cell types arise during embryonic development from a mesenchymal stem cell pool through a process ..
  21. Chen Y, Chenier I, Chang S, Tran S, Ingelfinger J, Zhang S. High glucose promotes nascent nephron apoptosis via NF-kappaB and p53 pathways. Am J Physiol Renal Physiol. 2011;300:F147-56 pubmed publisher
    ..Our data demonstrate that high glucose-induced nascent nephron apoptosis is mediated, at least in part, via ROS generation and the activation of NF-?B and p53 pathways. ..
  22. Nagasawa T, Mori T, Ohsaki Y, Yoneki Y, Guo Q, Sato E, et al. Albuminuria indicates the pressure-associated injury of juxtamedullary nephrons and cerebral strain vessels in spontaneously hypertensive stroke-prone rats. Hypertens Res. 2012;35:1024-31 pubmed publisher
    ..Nifedipine inhibited stroke events in these animals until they were 14 weeks old. These results indicate that albuminuria is a result of juxtamedullary nephron injury and a marker of pressure-induced injury of the strain vessels. ..
  23. Hadchouel J, Büsst C, Procino G, Valenti G, Chambrey R, Eladari D. Regulation of extracellular fluid volume and blood pressure by pendrin. Cell Physiol Biochem. 2011;28:505-12 pubmed publisher
  24. Surendran K, Boyle S, Barak H, Kim M, Stomberski C, McCright B, et al. The contribution of Notch1 to nephron segmentation in the developing kidney is revealed in a sensitized Notch2 background and can be augmented by reducing Mint dosage. Dev Biol. 2010;337:386-95 pubmed publisher
  25. Tsujihata M, Nonomura N, Tsujimura A, Yoshimura K, Miyagawa Y, Okuyama A. Laparoscopic nephroureterectomy for upper tract transitional cell carcinoma: comparison of laparoscopic and open surgery. Eur Urol. 2006;49:332-6 pubmed
    ..ONU still represents the gold standard for the management of upper tract transitional cell carcinoma; however, for low stage cases, LNU offers the advantages of minimally invasive surgery. ..
  26. Goel M, Sinkins W, Zuo C, Estacion M, Schilling W. Identification and localization of TRPC channels in the rat kidney. Am J Physiol Renal Physiol. 2006;290:F1241-52 pubmed
    ..These results suggest that TRPC1, -C3, and -C6 may play a functional role in PLC-dependent signaling in specific regions of the nephron. ..
  27. Wlodek M, Mibus A, Tan A, Siebel A, Owens J, Moritz K. Normal lactational environment restores nephron endowment and prevents hypertension after placental restriction in the rat. J Am Soc Nephrol. 2007;18:1688-96 pubmed
    ..It is shown for the first time that a prenatally induced nephron deficit can be restored by correcting growth restriction during lactation. ..
  28. Mugford J, Sipila P, McMahon J, McMahon A. Osr1 expression demarcates a multi-potent population of intermediate mesoderm that undergoes progressive restriction to an Osr1-dependent nephron progenitor compartment within the mammalian kidney. Dev Biol. 2008;324:88-98 pubmed publisher
    ..These studies provide new insights into the cellular origins of metanephric kidney structures and lend support to a model where Osr1 function is limited to establishing the nephron progenitor pool. ..
  29. Abitbol C, Ingelfinger J. Nephron mass and cardiovascular and renal disease risks. Semin Nephrol. 2009;29:445-54 pubmed publisher
    ..The total number of nephrons in human beings averages about 1 million per kidney but varies up to 10-fold, from approximately 200,000 to more ..
  30. Mugford J, Yu J, Kobayashi A, McMahon A. High-resolution gene expression analysis of the developing mouse kidney defines novel cellular compartments within the nephron progenitor population. Dev Biol. 2009;333:312-23 pubmed publisher
    ..During its organogenesis, the mammalian metanephric kidney generates thousands of nephrons over a protracted period of fetal life...
  31. Cunha A, Aguila M, Mandarim de Lacerda C. Effects of early postnatal hyperglycaemia on renal cortex maturity, endothelial nitric oxide synthase expression and nephron deficit in mice. Int J Exp Pathol. 2008;89:284-91 pubmed publisher
  32. Ito S, Nagasawa T, Abe M, Mori T. Strain vessel hypothesis: a viewpoint for linkage of albuminuria and cerebro-cardiovascular risk. Hypertens Res. 2009;32:115-21 pubmed publisher
    ..Analogous to the perforating arteries are the glomerular afferent arterioles of the juxtamedullary nephrons. Hypertensive vascular damage occurs first and more severely in the juxtamedullary glomeruli...
  33. Tran S, Chen Y, Chenier I, Chan J, Quaggin S, Hébert M, et al. Maternal diabetes modulates renal morphogenesis in offspring. J Am Soc Nephrol. 2008;19:943-52 pubmed publisher
    ..In conclusion, maternal diabetes impairs nephrogenesis, possibly via enhanced intrarenal activation of the renin-angiotensin system and NF-kappaB signaling. ..
  34. Gray S, Kenna K, Bertram J, Hoy W, Yan E, Bocking A, et al. Repeated ethanol exposure during late gestation decreases nephron endowment in fetal sheep. Am J Physiol Regul Integr Comp Physiol. 2008;295:R568-74 pubmed publisher
    ..A reduced nephron endowment of this magnitude could have important implications for the cardiovascular health of offspring during postnatal life. ..
  35. Reidy K, Rosenblum N. Cell and molecular biology of kidney development. Semin Nephrol. 2009;29:321-37 pubmed publisher
  36. Zandi Nejad K, Luyckx V, Brenner B. Adult hypertension and kidney disease: the role of fetal programming. Hypertension. 2006;47:502-8 pubmed
  37. Georgas K, Rumballe B, Valerius M, Chiu H, Thiagarajan R, Lesieur E, et al. Analysis of early nephron patterning reveals a role for distal RV proliferation in fusion to the ureteric tip via a cap mesenchyme-derived connecting segment. Dev Biol. 2009;332:273-86 pubmed publisher
    ..Using Six2-eGFPCre x R26R-lacZ mice, we demonstrate that these cells are derived from the cap mesenchyme and not the ureteric epithelium. Hence, both nephron patterning and patency are evident at the late renal vesicle stage. ..
  38. Grimont A, Bloch Faure M, El Abida B, Crambert G. Mapping of sex hormone receptors and their modulators along the nephron of male and female mice. FEBS Lett. 2009;583:1644-8 pubmed publisher
    ..This first "renal map" of sex steroid receptor expression may serve as a pre-requisite for investigating the role of these hormones on kidney functions. ..
  39. Boubred F, Buffat C, Feuerstein J, Daniel L, Tsimaratos M, Oliver C, et al. Effects of early postnatal hypernutrition on nephron number and long-term renal function and structure in rats. Am J Physiol Renal Physiol. 2007;293:F1944-9 pubmed
    ..Factors other than glomerular number reduction are likely to contribute to the arterial hypertension induced by early postnatal OF. ..
  40. Moritz K, Singh R, Probyn M, Denton K. Developmental programming of a reduced nephron endowment: more than just a baby's birth weight. Am J Physiol Renal Physiol. 2009;296:F1-9 pubmed publisher
    ..Recognition of the dissociation between birth weight and nephron endowment is important for future studies aimed at elucidating the role of a reduced nephron endowment in the developmental programming of adult disease. ..
  41. Praga M. Synergy of low nephron number and obesity: a new focus on hyperfiltration nephropathy. Nephrol Dial Transplant. 2005;20:2594-7 pubmed
  42. Schreuder M, Nauta J. Prenatal programming of nephron number and blood pressure. Kidney Int. 2007;72:265-8 pubmed
    ..this reduction in renal mass is supposed to lead to glomerular hyperfiltration and hypertension in remnant nephrons with subsequent glomerular injury with proteinuria, systemic hypertension and glomerulosclerosis...
  43. Zimanyi M, Hoy W, Douglas Denton R, Hughson M, Holden L, Bertram J. Nephron number and individual glomerular volumes in male Caucasian and African American subjects. Nephrol Dial Transplant. 2009;24:2428-33 pubmed publisher
    ..Half of each group had 'high' N(glom) (>1.2 million nephrons per kidney) and the other half had 'low' N(glom) (<600 000)...
  44. Becker F, Siemer S, Hack M, Humke U, Ziegler M, Stockle M. Excellent long-term cancer control with elective nephron-sparing surgery for selected renal cell carcinomas measuring more than 4 cm. Eur Urol. 2006;49:1058-63; discussion 1063-4 pubmed
    ..The surgeon's decision for organ-preserving surgery should depend on tumour localisation and technical feasibility rather than on tumour size. ..
  45. Meyer T, Schwesinger C, Sampogna R, Vaughn D, Stuart R, Steer D, et al. Rho kinase acts at separate steps in ureteric bud and metanephric mesenchyme morphogenesis during kidney development. Differentiation. 2006;74:638-47 pubmed
  46. Cain J, Islam E, Haxho F, Chen L, Bridgewater D, Nieuwenhuis E, et al. GLI3 repressor controls nephron number via regulation of Wnt11 and Ret in ureteric tip cells. PLoS ONE. 2009;4:e7313 pubmed publisher
    ..Thus, GLI3 repressor controls nephron number by regulating ureteric tip cell expression of Wnt11 and Ret. ..
  47. Margulis V, Tamboli P, Jacobsohn K, Swanson D, Wood C. Oncological efficacy and safety of nephron-sparing surgery for selected patients with locally advanced renal cell carcinoma. BJU Int. 2007;100:1235-9 pubmed
    ..In highly selected patients with locally advanced RCC, NSS is safe and provides oncological outcomes equivalent to patients managed with RN. ..
  48. Dressler G. Advances in early kidney specification, development and patterning. Development. 2009;136:3863-74 pubmed publisher
    ..How these developments influence and advance our understanding of kidney development is discussed. ..
  49. Ljungberg B, Hanbury D, Kuczyk M, Merseburger A, Mulders P, Patard J, et al. Renal cell carcinoma guideline. Eur Urol. 2007;51:1502-10 pubmed
    ..Updated recommendations concerning diagnosis, treatment, and follow-up can improve the clinical handling of patients with RCC. ..
  50. Hodgin J, Rasoulpour M, Markowitz G, D Agati V. Very low birth weight is a risk factor for secondary focal segmental glomerulosclerosis. Clin J Am Soc Nephrol. 2009;4:71-6 pubmed publisher
    ..Our findings support that very LBW and prematurity promote the development of secondary FSGS. Because birth history is often not obtained by adult nephrologists, this risk factor is likely to be underrecognized. ..
  51. Zimanyi M, Denton K, Forbes J, Thallas Bonke V, Thomas M, Poon F, et al. A developmental nephron deficit in rats is associated with increased susceptibility to a secondary renal injury due to advanced glycation end-products. Diabetologia. 2006;49:801-10 pubmed
    ..Since AGE formation is markedly elevated with hyperglycaemia, our findings suggest that a developmental or acquired deficit may render the kidney susceptible to diabetic renal disease. ..
  52. Bramlage C, Schlumbohm C, Pryce C, Mirza S, Schnell C, Amann K, et al. Prenatal dexamethasone exposure does not alter blood pressure and nephron number in the young adult marmoset monkey. Hypertension. 2009;54:1115-22 pubmed publisher
    ..Our data support the role of body weight as a predictor of elevated glomerular volume and BP development rather than prenatal dexamethasone exposure. ..
  53. Narlis M, Grote D, Gaitan Y, Boualia S, Bouchard M. Pax2 and pax8 regulate branching morphogenesis and nephron differentiation in the developing kidney. J Am Soc Nephrol. 2007;18:1121-9 pubmed
    ..Both genes are coexpressed in differentiating nephrons and collecting ducts...