Distribution of Ions and Water in Epithelial Cells and Tissues

  • Roger Rick
  • Walter Schratt
Conference paper
Part of the Springer Series in Biophysics book series (BIOPHYSICS, volume 4)


In tight epithelia, such as the toad urinary bladder and the mammalian collecting duct, a brisk transepithelial water flow can be induced by establishing a transepithelial osmotic gradient in the presence of antidiuretic hormone (ADH). Typically, water flow is accompanied by extensive cellular swelling (Peachey and Rasmussen, 1961; Ganote et al., 1968; Kirk et al., 1984) which, unlike swelling which is not caused by transcellular water flow, is largely confined to the apical pole of the epithelial cell while the basal pole is only marginally distended (DiBona et al., 1969). Based on this finding, DiBona (1981) proposed that cytoplasmic water flow induces an intracellular standing gradient of solutes and, therefore, gradient of water activity.


Granular Cell Tall Cell Toad Urinary Bladder Urinary Bladder Epithelium Intracellular Osmolarity 
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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 1989

Authors and Affiliations

  • Roger Rick
    • 1
  • Walter Schratt
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Physiology and Biophysics Nephrology Research and Training CenterUniversity of Alabama at BirminghamBirminghamUSA

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