How to support the RPTs to maximize kidney health in dogs and cats

A look at the role of the RPTs in kidney health, and how the right supplement can help support optimal function of this vital organ in your animal patients.

The most delicate parts of an animal’s kidneys are the Renal Proximal Tubules (RPTs). The RPTs clean the blood – that is, they sort through smaller molecules in the blood, reabsorbing molecules that the animal needs while removing waste products from the body.

In all types of mammals, RPTs reclaim vital nutrients such as sodium, chloride, calcium, phosphate, glucose, amino acids, bicarbonate, citrate, triglycerides, and water. At the same time, these tubules remove waste products like urea, directing it into the urine for elimination. RPTs also regulate the blood’s oxygen content by sensing oxygen saturation levels. When levels are low, they send out requests to circulating red blood cells to fix the low oxygen levels.

RPTs can be viewed not only as a filter but also as a barrier between blood and waste products. As RPTs separate blood and waste, they create both concentration and electrical gradients required for essential kidney function.

Supplemental support for the RPTs

The team at ION Biome has studied RPTs to determine what impact ION*Gut Health For Pets, a dietary supplement, has on these important biological barriers. In a paper titled “Renal Proximal Tubule Centric View of Health and Homeostasis in Mammals”, researchers measured the difficulty of an electron to cross this barrier using a method called Trans-Epithelial Electrical Resistance (TEER). The greater the TEER across the RPTs, the more capable they are for filtering waste. The test results indicated a dramatic and function-improving increase in the TEER for the RPTs for all six mammal species when ION*Gut Health For Pets was applied.

How does this translate to better pet health?

A recent publication has stated that the strength of epithelial-type barriers, such as RPT, is now considered a major component of a long health span1. Further, the ability of ION*Gut Health For Pets to increase TEER may be an important component supporting kidney health, whole body homeostasis, and overall health.

But ION*Gut Health For Pets doesn’t stop at kidney support. By strengthening tight junction integrity (the seals between cells) at the gut lining, this soil-derived supplement helps to balance microbiome health the natural way. With a balanced microbiome, your cats and dogs are able to thrive the way they were meant to.


1López-Otín C, Kroemer G. Hallmarks of Health. Cell. 2021 Jan 7;184(1):33-63. doi: 10.1016/j.cell.2020.11.034. Epub 2020 Dec 18. PMID: 33340459.


Matt Bednar, PhD, is the Senior Director of Business Development at Ion Biome. A scientist and engineer who has made a career from technology development through both small businesses and academia, Matt believes learning, sharing, and applying new ideas in our daily lives is how we can make the world better for us all.


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