Mean Myoglobin Oxygen Tension in Skeletal and Cardiac Muscle

  • R. F. Coburn
Part of the Advances in Experimental Medicine and Biology book series (AEMB, volume 37 A)


We have utilized the concept first developed by Millikan (1936, 1937) that myoglobin may be a useful indicator of intracellular oxygen tension. We have not made spectrophotometric measurements of oxymyoglobin % saturation, as did Millikan, since the presence of hemoglobin interferes with this measurement, but instead compute a mean myoglobin oxygen tension from measurements of carboxymyoglobin saturation (MBCO). This method has been described previously (Coburn and Mayers, 1971; Coburn et al, 1973). The basis of the method is illustrated in Fig. 1. Binding of O2 and CO to myoglobin is competitive, therefore, at a given partial pressure of CO, MBCO is a function of the oxygen tension in proximity to myoglobin molecules. This figure also illustrates that mean tissue Pco is equal to mean capillary Pco since CO is neither produced nor consumed at a significant rate.


Skeletal Muscle Oxygen Tension Oxygen Transport Hamstring Muscle Kinetic Equilibrium 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. Antonini, E., Physiol. Rev. 45: 123–170, 1965.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  2. Chance, B., Fed. Proc. 16: 671–680, 1957.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  3. Coburn, R.F. and L.B. Mayers, Am. J. Physiol. 220: 66–74, 1971.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  4. Coburn, R.F., F. Ploegmakers, P. Gondrie and R. Abboud, Am. J. Physiol. 224 (4), 1973.Google Scholar
  5. Douglas, C.C. and J.S. Haldane, J. Physiol. (Lond) 44: 305–354, 1912.Google Scholar
  6. James, N.T., Nature 219: 1174–1175, 1968.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Jobsis, F.F., J. Gen. Physiol. 46: 905–928, 1963.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Millikan, G.A., Proc. Roy. Soc. London Ser. B 120: 366–388, 1936.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Millikan, G.A., Proc. Roy. Soc. London Ser B 123: 218–241, 1937.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Rossi-Fanelli, A. and E. Antonini, Arch. Bioch. Biophys. 77: 478–492, 1958.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Wittenberg, J.B., Physiol. Rev. 50: 559–636, 1970.PubMedGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1973

Authors and Affiliations

  • R. F. Coburn
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Physiology, School of MedicineUniversity of PennsylvaniaPhiladelphiaUSA

Personalised recommendations