Potassium, sodium, and the intracellular fluid space of cells from bone
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Cells enzymatically dispersed from fetal rat calvaria were analyzed for sodium and potassium content and intracellular fluid space (ICF). Even when obtained in comparatively high yield, the cells are damaged by the isolation procedure as evidenced by high sodium and low potassium content immediately after isolation. During a post-incubation period potassium is accumulated and sodium extruded to steady-state levels. Although electrolyte content of cells after recovery did not vary as a function of cell yield, ICF was increased in cells obtained in lower yield, suggesting cell swelling as a result of membrane damage.
The weighted mean values obtained for the best cell preparations were 117 mM K+ and 27 mM Na+. Based on DNA assay of isolated cells and the whole tissue, 20- to 21-day calvaria were found to have an average of 8.1 × 106 cells/calvarium. Combining cell data with analysis of total tissue sodium, potassium, and water, it was concluded that the tissue extracellular sodium is in equilibrium with blood but that the potassium concentration is approximately 5-fold higher than blood levels.
Key wordsPotassium Sodium Water space Bone cells
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