Glomerular cells in culture

J. I. Kreisberg, M. J. Karnovsky

Research output: Contribution to journalEditorialpeer-review

214 Scopus citations


The purpose of this review is to explore the ways by which cell culture has broadened our knowledge of the biology and pathobiology of the renal glomerulus. With cell culture techniques, one can study homogeneous populations of cells under controlled conditions, without the influence of other glomerular cells and extraglomerular factors. It must be noted at the outset that there are certain inherent problems in this approach. First, cell types in culture may show phenotypic modulation, that is, the loss or gain of certain phenotypic properties. For example, smooth muscle cells rapidly lose their myosin after being cultured. Second, there is a paucity of both enzymatic and morphologic markers for glomerular cells in culture. Despite these limitations, this approach to the study of the glomerulus has drawn the interest of a number of investigators. GLomerular cell types from human rat, dog and guinea pig glomeruli have been studied to date by various investigators. We will discuss the various approaches these investigators have taken in isolating, identifying, and studying glomerular cell types as well as new information obtained from these studies. Additionally, we will discuss further areas of research that have developed as a direct result of data already obtained.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)439-447
Number of pages9
JournalKidney international
Issue number3
StatePublished - 1983
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Nephrology


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