Steady-state volumes and metabolism-independent osmotic adaptation in mammalian erythrocytes

Peter Bogner, Katalin Sipos, Andrea Ludány, Béla Somogyi, Attila Miseta

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21 Citations (Scopus)


Erythrocytes of various mammalian species including human - maintain osmotic balance with the blood plasma (osmotic activity 270-310 mosmol). However, their intracellular levels of osmotically active ions (potassium, sodium, chloride, and hydrogencarbonate), water content and osmotic resistance deviate significantly. In the present report we study the relationship among intracellular water, potassium and sodium levels of the erythrocytes of various mammalian species and in the developing calf. In addition, the osmotic resistance, K+ (Rb+) uptake and the DPH fluorescence anisotropy of various erythrocytes and erythrocyte ghost membranes were correlated. The results show no statistically significant relationship between erythrocyte water content and [K+ + Na+] levels or K+/Na+ ratios. The reversal of erythrocyte K+/Na+ ratios coincides with the decrease of steadystate ATP levels in the developing calf. The mobility of lipids within the hydrophobic inner layer of the plasma membrane relates closely to passive K+ (Rb+) uptake, and plays a significant role in regulatory volume changes.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)145-152
Number of pages8
JournalEuropean Biophysics Journal
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - May 1 2002



  • Erythrocyte
  • Hemoglobin
  • Membrane fluidity
  • Na, K-ATPase
  • Volume regulation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biophysics

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