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Am J Physiol Renal Physiol. 2015 May 15;308(10):F1098-118. doi: 10.1152/ajprenal.00505.2014. Epub 2015 Feb 18.

A mathematical model of the rat nephron: glucose transport.

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Department of Physiology and Biophysics, Department of Medicine, Weill Medical College of Cornell University, New York, New York


Mathematical models of the proximal tubule (PT), loop of Henle (LOH), and distal nephron have been combined to simulate transport by rat renal tubules. The ensemble is composed of 24,000 superficial (SF) nephrons and 12,000 juxtamedullary (JM) nephrons in 5 classes (according to LOH length); all coalesce into 7,200 connecting tubules (CNT). Medullary interstitial solute concentrations are specified. The model equations require that each nephron glomerular filtration rate (GFR) satisfies a tubuloglomerular feedback (TGF) relationship, and each initial hydrostatic pressure yields a common CNT pressure; that common CNT pressure is determined from an overall distal hydraulic resistance to flow. By virtue of the greater GFR for JM nephrons, fluid delivery to SF and JM tubules is comparable. Glucose reabsorption is restricted to the PT, cotransported with one Na in the convoluted tubule (SGLT2), and two Na in the straight tubule (SGLT1). Increasing ambient glucose from 5 to 10 mM increases proximal Na reabsorption and decreases distal delivery. This is mitigated by a TGF-mediated increase in GFR, and may thus be an etiology for TGF-mediated glomerular hyperfiltration. With SGLT2 inhibition by 95%, the model predicts that under normoglycemic conditions about 60% of filtered glucose will still be reabsorbed, so that profound glycosuria is not to be expected. Compared with glucose-driven osmotic diuresis, SGLT2 inhibition provokes greater natriuresis. When hyperglycemia is superimposed on SGLT2 inhibition, the model suggests that natriuresis may be severe, reflecting synergy of a proximal diuretic and osmotic diuresis. In sum, the model captures TGF-mediated diabetic hyperfiltration and predicts glomerular protection with SGLT2 inhibition.


SGLT2 inhibition; diabetes; glomerular hyperfiltration; tubuloglomerular feedback

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