Studies on renal function in the cow with particular reference to sodium and potassium excretion

Pickering, Eric C (1967) Studies on renal function in the cow with particular reference to sodium and potassium excretion. PhD thesis, University of Glasgow.

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The kidneys commonly described are excretory organs, but few physiologists would accept this as an adequate description. In distinguishing between the external environment of an organism and the immediate environment of the component cells of that organism, Claude Bernard established more than 100 years ago a unifying concept in physiology within which the interrelation of the activities of the body came increasingly to toe appreciated. A wide variety of physiological devices and processes operate to preserve and stabilise the physical properties and chemical construction of this internal environment and the resulting constancy, as Bernard pointed out, liberates the organism from immediate and continuous dependency on the conditions which obtain In the external world. The kidneys are therefore more properly regarded as an important executive of the processes which regulate the volume and the composition of this internal fluid environment; the excretory function of the kidneys is incidental to this regulatory function. Host experimental investigations of mammalian kidney function have been carried out on dogs, in which the renal responses to experimental procedures are in general closely similar to those of man. In addition the dog may conveniently toe studied using the facilities available in most physiology laboratories. Herbivores have been used much less frequently since the findings of such investigations clearly may less readily toe applied to man, because the major dietary differences must give rise to differences in homeostatic requirements. Also the accommodation and restraint of large domestic herbivores in laboratories designed for work on co-operative human volunteers, or on experimental animals no larger than the dog, present considerable practical difficulties. The ruminant herbivore has nevertheless attracted considerable attention from physiologists; but this has been directed mainly towards the alimentary tract, on which much information has been gained from applying techniques originally developed in the dog and in man. The normal diet of herbivores, however, differs from the normal diet of man and the dog, not only in its greater content of material indigestible by mammalian gastrointestinal enzymes, but also in its mineral content. In particular it is well known that the normal diet of grading animals is high in potassium and low in sodium content, so that the excretion of these ions must involve differences in emphasis of the renal processes which have been described in man and in the dog. The following study of kidney function in the cow was therefore undertaken to investigate these differences and so to establish more clearly some details of the homeostatic role of the kidney in this animal. It is hoped that the findings will contribute to our general understanding of mammalian kidney function and also aid in furthering our understanding of disease conditions in cattle which involve disturbances of the balance or the distribution of water and electrolytes in the animal body.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Qualification Level: Doctoral
Additional Information: Adviser: William L Weipers
Keywords: Animal sciences
Date of Award: 1967
Depositing User: Enlighten Team
Unique ID: glathesis:1967-73688
Copyright: Copyright of this thesis is held by the author.
Date Deposited: 14 Jun 2019 08:56
Last Modified: 14 Jun 2019 08:56

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