Counter-Current Exchange Across Vasa Recta

  • Anita T. Layton
  • Aurélie Edwards
Part of the Lecture Notes on Mathematical Modelling in the Life Sciences book series (LMML)


The microvessels of the renal medulla, known as vasa recta, form a counter-current arrangement. They play an essential role in the delivery of oxygen and other nutrients to renal tissue, and the removal of water and solutes reabsorbed by renal tubules. The first part of this chapter describes the principles of counter-current exchange. In the following sections we formulate the equations that represent the transport of water and solutes across the plasma and red blood cell compartments of vasa recta. Lastly, we examine the specific case of oxygen, which is supplied by vasa recta and provides the energy needed for active reabsorption across renal tubules.


Volume Flux Renal Medulla Outer Medulla Oncotic Pressure Solute Concentration Profile 
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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • Anita T. Layton
    • 1
  • Aurélie Edwards
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of MathematicsDuke UniversityDurhamUSA
  2. 2.Centre de Recherche des Cordeliers ERL 8228, UMRS 1138 Equipe 3ParisFrance

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