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The urinary system

Slide 72. The kidney (H&E) x 100 Slide 8 The main functions of the urinary system are the production, storage, and excretion of urine. The kidneys are responsible for the production and composition of urine. Each kidney is surrounded by a capsule of connective tissue. The kidney can be divided into two distinct regions, an outer lighter-staining, the cortex, and an inner darker-staining, the medulla. The kidney cortex can be divided into an outer layer, the cortex corticis (without renal corpuscles, with distal convoluted tubules) and an inner layer, the cortex proper( containing renal corpuscles and both proximal and distal convoluted tubules). Within the cortex vertical striatations- rays of Ferrein can be seen. Between them lie cortical labyrinths containing renal corpuscles and proximal and distal tubules. Below the cortex, long tubules belonging to the renal medulla can be seen. These are thin and thick segments of loop of Henle, and papillary ducts, which are located at different levels, depending on a type of nephron loop. At a magnification of 400, it is possible to examine the structure of the renal corpuscle . Renal corpuscle is filled with capillaries forming vascular loops( glomerulus). Mesangial cells lies between the capillaries, which are supported by them. The capillary loops are surrounded by Bowmans capsule composed of two layers, namely an outer parietal layer of flat epithelial cells and inner visceral layer of podocytes. Proximal and distal convoluted tubules can be differentiated from each other in H&E sections. Proximal convoluted tubules are composed of a simple cuboidal epithelium, whose cell contain intensely pink cytoplasm. The apical surface of these cells displays numerous high microvilli, which make the tubular lumen poorly visible. The basal membrane of each cell has numerous invaginations containing mitochondria, what gives the appearance of basal striatation. Distal convoluted tubules are lined by a simple cuboidal epithelium composed of more numerous and lighterstaining cells. The borders between the cells are distinct, and the tubular lumen is wide and regular. In the medulla the thin segments of the loop of Henle and collecting tubules can be seen. The thin segments are lined by a simple squamous epithelium displaying a small number of cells in section. The collecting tubules are lined by a simple cuboidal epithelium composed of pale-staining cells. The boundaries between the cells are clearly visible. In the deeper portions of the medulla the collecting tubules are lined by a tall columnar epithelium. In some specimens a portion of the renal calyx can be seen. The calyx is lined by a transitional epithelium. Close to some glomeruli the macula densa can be seen. The macula densa consists of epithelial cells belonging to the distal convoluted tubules adherent to Bowmans capsule. These cells are taller and their nuclei are packed; hence the term macula densa.


Glomerulus PCT DCT

collecting tubules

Acurate A+V

Macula densa.

Slide 73. The kidney injected with Indian ink. (H&E) x 100 The components of the renal parenchyma are the servants of the blood vascular supply because the function of the kidney is to filtrate and cleanse the blood. In this specimen, the vascular bed has been injected with Indian ink and then the specimen has been stained with eosin. As a result, large and small arteries and veins, capillaries and glomeruli are visible.

Differentiation: Beneath the capsule of the kidney lies a subcapsular vascular network, which enters the cortex corticis to form a subcapsular plexus. The cortex contains glomerular tufts differently filled with Indian ink, which indicates different levels of activity. The vascular poles of the glomerular tufts contain afferent and efferent arterioles. The cortex also contains a network of peritubular capillaries. Between the cortex and medulla lie arcuate arteries and veins, from which interlobular arteries and veins branch and run through the cortex towards the capsule. The medulla contains vasa recta (arteries and veins), which spring directly from the arcuate vessels. Arteriolae rectae verae are the branches of the arcuate arteries. Arteriolae rectae spuriae branch from the efferent arterioles and descend into the renal medulla. Arcuate A+V

Slide 74. The urinary bladder or the ureter. (H&E) x 100 The excretory components of the urinary system, including the urinary bladder and the ureter, are similar in basic structure. These scructures generally possess a three-layered wall composed of a mucosa of transitional epithelium lying on a lamina propria of connective tissue, a muscularis (smooth muscle) ,and an adventitia. The ureter is a long tube conducting urine from the kidney to the urinary bladder. The specimen is a transverse section of the urinary bladder. The luminal surface of the urinary bladder is lined by a multilayered transitional epithelium called urothelium (for details see the chapter on epithelium).Epithelium of the relaxed bladder is five to six cell layers thick and has rounded superficial dome shaped cells that bulge into the lumen.The epithelium of the distended bladder is only three to four cell layers thick.

The urothelium rests on a thin basement membrane supported by a rather thin layer of connective tisssue ( the lamina propria). Beneath the lamina propria are smooth musce cells arranged in an inner longitudinal layer, a middle circular layer, and an outer longitudinal layer. These muscular layers are covered by an additional membrane composed of loose or membranous connective tisssue. Differentiation: The urinary bladders wall is similar in structure to the wall of the ureter. However, there are defferences between them resulting, among other things, from their locations. The upper and back surfaces of the urinary bladder are covered by peritoneum. Elsewhere, the urinary bladder is covered by an adventitia. In contrast to the ureter, the fundus and front part of the urinary bladder are devoid of submucosa. Within the trigone of the urinary badder is the sphincter of the urinary bladder. Smooth muscle Trasitional cell