Bulletin of Mathematical Biology

, Volume 39, Issue 2, pp 267–273 | Cite as

Cooperative specific adsorption phenomena in biology

  • George Karreman


The importance of cooperative specific adsorption for the interpretation of biological processes is pointed out by the agreement of experimental data with a cooperative specific adsorption isotherm which has been derived on the basis of statistical mechanics as well as stochastically.

An approach is described to account for physiological excitation on the basis of cooperative specific adsorption of potassium and sodium after a switch in the adsorption preference of the sites for those ions. To derive the accompanying bioelectric phenomena, the vacant negative adsorbing sites and the changes of occupancy of the interstitial sites have to be taken into account. This leads to the kinetics of cooperative phenomena in which each state variable can assume at least three values. For this purpose a master-equation has to be solved or a Monte Carlo method used.

It is suggested that the calcium concentration be considered as a control variable when catastrophe theory is applied.


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Copyright information

© Society for Mathematical Biology 1977

Authors and Affiliations

  • George Karreman
    • 1
  1. 1.Bockus Institute and Department of PhysiologyUniversity of PennsylvaniaPhiladelphiaUSA

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