Osmotic nephrosis refers to structural changes that occur at the cellular level in the human kidney. Cells, primarily of the straight proximal tubule, swell due to the formation of large vacuoles in the cytoplasm. These vacuoles occur in the presence of large amounts of certain solutes circulating in the tubules. However, despite the condition's name, the solutes do not cause change through osmotic forces but through pinocytosis. Once inside the cytoplasm, pinocytic vacuoles combine with each other and with lysosomes to form large vacuoles that appear transparent under microscopic examination.
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