Quantitative glomerular morphology of the normal and diabetic baboon kidney

L. C. Stout, D. S. Folse, J. Meier, W. M. Crosby, R. Kling, G. R. Williams, W. E. Price, J. R. Geyer, R. Padula, E. Whorton, P. Kimmelstiel

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Scopus citations


This is a study of quantitative glomerular morphology in 14 normal and 6l ong-term diabetic female baboons between 3 and 25 years of age. In the normal female baboon, peripheral glomerular capillary basement membrane thickness increased until around 10 years of age, reached a plateau between 10 and 20 years of age, and possibly decreased at 25 years of age. Mean values for young (3 to 7 years of age) and older (10 to 25 years of age) controls were 266 nm and 329 nm respectively. Fractional volumes of mesangial matrix (8.9%) and mesangial cells (6.8%) were not affected by age. Glomerular basement membrane thickness and the volume of mesangial matrix increased progressively in female baboons with poorly controlled pancreatectomy-induced diabetes, while the volume of mesangial cells remained unchanged. After 106 to 145 months of diabetes, glomerular basement membrane thickness and the volume of mesangial matrix were 558 nm and 18.7% respectively. These values were significantly greater than those of the age-matched controls (p = < 0.05). By light and electron microscopy, the normal baboon glomerular morphology, morphometric measurements and changes with age were similar to those in man. The renal changes in diabetic baboons were also similar in morphology and rate of development to those of mild to moderate diffuse diabetic glomerulosclerosis in humans, indicating that the baboon is an ideal model for the long-term study of diabetic glomerulosclerosis. The presence of considerable interanimal variability in the degree of glomerulosclerosis attained after prolonged diabetes suggested that glomerulosclerosis progressed at different rates in these models. The reason for this was not apparent.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)734-740
Number of pages7
Issue number10
StatePublished - Oct 1986
Externally publishedYes


  • Basement membrane
  • baboons
  • diabetes
  • mesangium
  • pancreatectomy
  • quantitative glomerular morphometry

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Internal Medicine
  • Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism


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