May 20, 1934

THE POTASSIUM EQUILIBRIUM IN MUSCLE

The Journal of General Physiology
W O FENN, D M Cobb

Abstract

1. Analyses were made of the K and HCO(3) content, the irritability, and weight change of isolated frog sartorius muscles after immersion for 5 hours in Ringer's solutions modified as to pH and potassium content. 2. At each pH a concentration of potassium in the solution was found which was in diffusion equilibrium with the potassium in the muscle. In greater concentrations potassium moved into the muscle against the concentration gradient and vice versa. 3. The greater the alkalinity of the solution the smaller the concentration of the potassium at equilibrium so that the product of the concentrations of OH and K in the solution at equilibrium tends to remain approximately constant. 4. The pH inside the muscle is approximately equal to that outside when first dissected but it tends to change during immersion so as to follow the changes in the pH of the solution. This finding is in direct conflict with the theory according to which the high potassium concentration inside should be accompanied by an equally high hydrogen ion concentration in relation to that outside. 5. The diffusion of potassium into the muscle makes its contents more alkaline but the increase in alkalinity is not always, nor usually, equivalent to the amount o...Continue Reading

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Mentioned in this Paper

Ringer's solution
Hydrogen Ion Concentration Measurement
Structure of Sartorius Muscle
RINGER'S
Cations
Entire Sartorius Muscle
Acids
Potassium supplement
Potassium Measurement
Heartburn Acidity

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