Atypical renal clearance of nanoparticles larger than the kidney filtration threshold

Christophorus F. Adhipandito, Siu Hung Cheung, Yu Han Lin, Si Han Wu

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

22 Citations (Scopus)


In recent years, several publications reported that nanoparticles larger than the kidney filtration threshold were found intact in the urine after being injected into laboratory mice. This theoretically should not be possible, as it is widely known that the kidneys prevent molecules larger than 6–8 nm from escaping into the urine. This is interesting because it implies that some nanoparticles can overcome the size limit for renal clearance. What kinds of nanoparticles can “bypass” the glomerular filtration barrier and cross into the urine? What physical and chemical characteristics are essential for nanoparticles to have this ability? And what are the biomolecular and cellular mechanisms that are involved? This review attempts to answer those questions and summarize known reports of renal-clearable large nanoparticles.

Original languageEnglish
Article number11182
JournalInternational journal of molecular sciences
Issue number20
Publication statusPublished - Oct 1 2021


  • Glomerular filtration barrier
  • Inorganic nanoparticles
  • Kidney filtration
  • Nanoformulations
  • Organic nanoparticles
  • Renal clearance

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Catalysis
  • Molecular Biology
  • Spectroscopy
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Physical and Theoretical Chemistry
  • Organic Chemistry
  • Inorganic Chemistry


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