Deletions of claudin-2 (Cldn2) and aquaporin1 (AQP1) reduce proximal fluid reabsorption (PFR) by about 30% and 50%, respectively. Experiments were done to replicate these observations and to determine in AQP1/claudin-2 double knockout mice (DKO) if the effects of deletions of these established water pores are additive. PFR was determined in inactin/ketamine-anesthetized mice by free-flow micropuncture using single-nephron I(125)-iothalamate (io) clearance. Animal means of PFR [% of glomerular filtration rate (GFR)] derived from TF/Piothalamate ratios in 12 mice in each of four groups [wild type (WT), Cldn2(-/-), AQP1(-/-), and DKO) were 45.8 ± 0.85 (51 tubules), 35.4 ± 1 (54 tubules; P < 0.01 vs. WT), 36.8 ± 1 (63 tubules; P < 0.05 vs. WT), and 33.9 ± 1.4 (69 tubules; P < 0.01 vs. WT). Kidney and single-nephron GFRs (SNGFR) were significantly reduced in all mutant strains. The direct relationship between PFR and SNGFR was maintained in mutant mice, but the slope of this relationship was reduced in the absence of Cldn2 and/or AQP1. Transtubular osmotic pressure differences were not different between WT and Cldn2(-/-) mice, but markedly increased in DKO. In conclusion, the deletion of Cldn2, AQP1, or of both Cldn2 and AQP1 reduces PFR by 22.7%, 19.6%, and 26%, respectively. Our data are consistent with an up to 25% paracellular contribution to PFR. The reduced osmotic water permeability caused by absence of AQP1 augments luminal hypotonicity. Aided by a fall in filtered load, the capacity of non-AQP1-dependent transcellular reabsorption is sufficient to maintain PFR without AQP1 and claudin-2 at 75% of control.
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