Alterations of renal cortex and medullary glycosaminoglycans in aging dog kidney

N. S. Vasan, R. A. Saporito, S. Saraswathi, J. V. Tesoriero, S. Manley

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

18 Scopus citations


Age-related changes in renal function have been attributed to alterations in the chemical composition of the kidney tissues. Hence, the glycosaminoglycan composition of the renal cortex and medulla at varying age intervals was investigated. Glycosaminoglycans were isolated from the tissues by means of digestion with collagenase and pronase and purified by ethanol precipitation. Subsequent separation of various polyanions was accomplished by ion exchange chromatography on a Dowex 1-X2 column, using sodium chloride buffers of increasing ionic strengths. The glycosaminoglycans in each fraction were identified and quantified by digestion with specific enzymes, including hyaluronidase, chondroitinase AC and ABC. The enzyme resistant material was separated and further digested with nitrous acid to quantitate the proportion of heparon sulfate. The results indicate that the glycosaminoglycan content of the renal medulla was much higher than the cortex at all the age intervals studied, and age-induced reduction was mainly cortical. There was a significant reduction in the heparan sulfate content of the cortex in aging. Interestingly, the major glycosaminoglycan content of the medulla was hyaluronic acid, which showed a sharp increase during aging, whereas heparan sulfate declined. Chondroitin sulfate was not altered due to age in either tissue. The molecular weight of hyaluronic acid was determined by column chromatography. Results indicate that the size of hyaluronate in the cortex was small and did not vary with age. In the medulla of the younger age group, a considerable amount of large size hyaluronate was observed. As age increased, the size decreased. The results strongly suggest that alteration in the renal glycosaminoglycans may be partly responsible for the age related protinuria and ionic imbalance.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)197-205
Number of pages9
JournalBiochimica et Biophysica Acta - General Subjects
Issue number2
StatePublished - Oct 18 1983
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Biophysics
  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Biology


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