Podocyte Cells

Podocytes (or visceral epithelial cells) are cells in the Bowman’s capsule in the kidneys that wrap around the capillaries of the glomerulus  The Bowman’s capsule filters blood, holding back large molecules such as proteins, and passing through small molecules such as water, salts, and sugar, as the first step in forming urine. (from Wikipedia)


False Color SEM, of podocyte cells by Thomas Deerinck. Source UCSD healthsciences.tumblr

The podocyte cells form interweaving extensions, called pedicles, that infiltrate the kidneys’ capillary system. Toxic waste is extracted as it moves through the pedicles’ interlocking filtration slits, transferred to the lumen of the Bowman’s capsule and finally drained into the bladder as urine.

The process is efficient and endlessly hard-working, filtering roughly 100 liters (26 gallons) of blood every hour. (UCSD Health sciences)

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