Renal autoregulation: From experiment to modeling.
Department of Biomedical Sciences,
Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences,
The kidneys provide important long-term regulation of the cardiovascular system by maintaining the volume and composition of the body fluids within narrow bounds. At the same time, the kidneys protect their own function against short-term variations in the blood pressure. There are two main mechanisms of autoregulation: tubuloglomerular feedback (TGF) and myogenic response, that operate at different frequency bands. Functional units of the kidney, nephrons, interact by exchanging electrical signals conducted through endothelial cells of the vascular wall, leading to synchronization of their pressure and flow oscillations. We have developed a novel experimental approach based on laser speckle flowmetry to measure the blood flow dynamics of many nephrons on the kidney surface of anesthetized rats. Using available anatomical and physiological information we have introduced the first large-scale mathematical model of the nephro-vascular network incorporating a realistic topology of the renal vascular structure with functional units, nephrons, interacting via vascular propagated signals.