Zeitschrift für Zellforschung und Mikroskopische Anatomie

, Volume 118, Issue 3, pp 326–332

Ultrastructure of mesangial and juxtaglomerular cells in the kidney of a hibernator

  • Marilyn L. Zimny
  • Edward D. LevyJr.

DOI: 10.1007/BF00331191

Cite this article as:
Zimny, M.L. & Levy, E.D. Z. Zellforsch. (1971) 118: 326. doi:10.1007/BF00331191


The mesangial and juxtaglomerular cells were studied in kidneys of hibernating and non-hibernating ground squirrels, Citellus tridecemlineatus. In the hibernating animal, as compared with the non-hibernating, the mesangial cells show signs of increased activity. The cells are relatively larger, and numerous vacuoles appear in the cytoplasm. The juxtaglomerular cells also show signs of hyperactivity. Secretion droplets, mitochondria and free ribosomes increase in number and the endoplasmic reticulum becomes dilated. It is postulated that during hibernation, increased activity of mesangial cells slows glomerular filtration by absorption of filtrate into the mesangial matrix, and increased activity of juxtaglomerular cells results in increased renin secretion which in turn may stimulate hypersecretion of aldosterone to conserve sodium for water balance mechanisms necessary at the time.


KidneyMesangiumHibernatorJuxtaglomerular apparatus

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 1971

Authors and Affiliations

  • Marilyn L. Zimny
    • 1
  • Edward D. LevyJr.
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of AnatomyLouisiana State University Medical CenterNew OrleansUSA