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Measurements of facilitated diffusion of oxygen in red blood cells at 37°C


The steady state transfer of O2 across thin layers of centrifuged red cells at 37°C was measured before and after saturation of the haemoglobin with CO. The measurements were taken at 107 Torr and 116 Torr average O2 partial pressure difference, respectively.

Before CO saturation the O2 transfer was 64 percent higher than afterwards. The average difference of the O2 saturation at both surfaces of the erythrocyte layer was 82%.

The maximum of the facilitated O2 diffusion by oxyhaemoglobin diffusion was calculated to be equal to the free diffusion which occurs at 100 Torr partial pressure difference.

The rate of facilitated O2 diffusion in red cells corresponds to a diffusion coefficient of the carrier (haemoglobin) of 5–6×10−8 cm2/sec.

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with the technical assistance ofD. Nienaber andH. Büklow

Supported by the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft.

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Moll, W. Measurements of facilitated diffusion of oxygen in red blood cells at 37°C. Pflugers Arch. 305, 269–278 (1969).

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  • Facilitated Diffusion
  • Oxygen
  • Erythrocytes
  • Haemoglobin


  • Erleichterte Diffusion
  • Sauerstoff
  • Erythrocyten
  • Hämoglobin