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Tamm-Horsfall mucoprotein

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A normal glycoprotein (mucoprotein) which is not derived from plasma, but is produced by the ascending limb of the loop of Henle. When this protein is concentrated at low pH, it forms gel. Tamm-Horsfall is the most abundant protein in mammalian urine.

The protein was first purified by Tamm and Horsfall from healthy individuals. It was later detected in the urine of mammals studied.


  • I. Tamm, F. L. Horsfall:
    Characterization and separation of an Inhibitor of Viral Hemagglutination Present in Urine. Proceedings of the Society of Experimental Biology and Medicine, 1950, 74: 108-114.
  • I. Tamm, F. L. Horsfall:
    A mucoprotein derived from human urine which reacts with influenza, mumps and Newcastle disease viruses.
    Journal of Experimental Medicine, New York, 1952, 95: 71. The first important studies of urinary casts were done by the Italian physician Carlo Leopoldo Rovida (1844-1877) and published between 1870 and 1976:
  • Della propriet√† chimiche dei cilindri dell' urina.
    Giornale della R. Accademia di medicine di Torino, 1870.
  • Intorno all' origine dei cilindri dell' urina. Gazzetta medica italiana. Lombardia.
    Milano, 32, 1872.
  • I cilindri dell' urina e i loro rapporti colle lesioni dei reni.
    Archivio per le scienze mediche, Torino, volume 1, 1876-1877.
  • G. B. Fogazzi, G. Testanera:
    The Farsighted Studies of the Italian Carlo L. Rovida (1844-1877) on the Nature of Urinary Casts.
    American Journal of Nephrology, 2002, 22: 300-308.

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