The transitional zone of the renal artery in cats

Document Type : Full paper (Original article)


1 Graduated from School of Veterinary Medicine, Shiraz University, Shiraz, Iran

2 Department of Anatomical Sciences, School of Medicine, Shiraz University of Medical Sciences, Shiraz, Iran

3 Department of Anatomical Sciences, School of Veterinary Medicine, Shiraz University, Shiraz, Iran


The length and structure of the transitional zone in the tunica media in the renal artery of adult male cats were investigated. In addition, the volume of the lumen and different layers in transitional and nontransitional zones in the right and left sides were also determined. Morphometrical, histological and stereological studies were performed on 16 renal arteries of 8 adult male cats. After perfusion and morphometrical measurement, routine tissue processing was carried out by autotechnicon. The processed tissues were embedded in paraffin and sectioned serially into 5 μm thickness. The sections were stained with haematoxylin and eosin and orcein. In the morphometrical measurement, the right renal arteries were longer than the left ones with a mean value of 22.0 ± 0.2 and 18.8 ± 0.1 mm, respectively. Despite the fact that the right renal artery is commonly longer, the length of transitional zone was 7 mm in both renal arteries of adult male cats. The artery has a structure between muscular and elastic type at its origin with several elastic layers in the tunica media which is gradually changed to a muscular type at the distal section after 7 mm from origin of aorta. Transitional zone has an arrangement of parallel elastic fibers which become rare and fragmented towards the non-transitional zone. The volume of tunica intima, tunica media, tunica adventitia and lumen of the artery decrease from transitional zone towards the non-transitional zone and the volume of these areas in both transitional and non-transitional zones in the right renal artery is more than the left one. The volume of the lumen in transitional zone differs significantly compared to non-transitional zone, in both sides (P<0.05). Also there is a significant difference in the volume of the lumen in non-transitional zone between right and left renal arteries (P<0.05).