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Histol Histopathol. 1986 Apr;1(2):139-46.

Ultrastructure of the renal corpuscle of Testudo graeca (Chelonia). A comparison between hibernating and non-hibernating animals.

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  • 1Department of Histology, School of Medicine, Murcia, Spain.


The renal corpuscle of hibernating and non-hibernating Testudo graeca was studied by means of light and electron microscopy. Renal corpuscles are small and have a glomerular architecture similar to that found in other vertebrates with a limited glomerular filtration rate. In hibernating animals, unlike non-hibernating, some morphological changes took place. The cells of the renal corpuscle were densely packed, podocytes and parietal cells showed a marked cytoplasmic vacuolization, there was a highly developed capillary basement membrane and the endothelial and mesangial cells showed abundant dense granules. These morphological features apparently correspond to a vacuolar degeneration. They may also be the morphological basis of the decrease in the glomerular filtration rate observed during this period.

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