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Nephron loop ; countercurrent mechanism

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The countercurrent mechanism consists of

"current" of water in one direction and "current" of NaCl moving in opposite direction


High sodium gradient maintained by

active transport of of Na and Cl in ascending limb


The nephron loop (loop of Henle) is located

between PCT and DCT of nephron


Function of nephron loop is

create concentration gradient thru use of countercurrent mechanism


The descending limb is also called _________ and is permeable to _____

thin segment; water


The ascending limb is also called ______ and actively transports ________

thick segement; electrolytes (Na,K, Cl) into interstitium


Isotonic fluid has

has the same salt concentration as cells and blood


Hypotonic solutions contain

less solute then blood does and causes water to leave the solution


Hypertonic solutions have

greater concentration of solutes than blood/body fluids


Solution moves enters the descending limb as a ______ mOsm ______ solution

300; isotonic


Solution moving thru the descending limb _____ moves out thru ____ to higher _____concentration in interstitium

water; aquaporins (water channels); solute


At the bottom of the nephron loop the concentration of the solution is up to ____ which is a _____solution

1200 mOsm; hypertonic


Solution moves up the ascending limb and active transport proteins also called called ______co-transport electrolytes into interstitium.

NKCC (Sodium, potassium, chloride)


The Ascending limb is not permeable to ____



The active transport proteins use ___; the solutes leaving ascending limb cause solution to be____ concentrated

ATP; less


Solution exiting nephron loop is ____ at ___ mOsm

hypotonic; 100


Aquaportins are____ and use ____movement

special protein channels; passive


Loop Diuretics block the ______

NKCC protein


Overall path through nephron loop (6 steps)

  1. 300 mOsm isotonic solution enters descending limb
  2. water moves out thru aquaporins
  3. bottom of nephron loop has 1200 mOsm hypertonic solution
  4. solution moves up ascending limb
  5. NKCC active transport proteins co-transport electrolytes back to interstitium
  6. solution leaving nephron loop is 100mOms hypotonic solution

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