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Nephrons use a counter-current multiplier to produce a large osmotic concentration gradient in the medulla of the kidney (Figure 1).

Figure 1. Schematic representation of a nephron, showing the proximal convoluted tubule, loop of Henle, distal convoluted tubule, and collecting duct. Osmolarity of the tubular fluid is shown in mOsm/L. Created for Albert.io. Copyright 2016. All rights reserved.

What properties of the loop of Henle allows the creation of the gradient?

A

The descending limb is only permeable to sodium ions, and the ascending limb is only permeable to water.

B

The descending limb actively pumps out sodium ions, and the ascending limb is only permeable to water.

C

The descending limb is only permeable to water, and the ascending limb actively pumps out sodium ions.

D

The descending limb is permeable to water, and sodium ions and the ascending limb actively pumps out sodium ions.

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