Phosphorus Metabolites by NMR
31Phosphorus NMR has been applied to intact biological systems for almost 10 years (1) and it is opportune to review what has been learned from this technique over this period. The first observation of NMR signals from intact living tissues were in red cells, E. Coli and in cooled frog muscle, but has progressed rapidly to isolated perfused organs of poikilotherms, intact animals, and to man (2). Major technical developments have aided this progress with larger magnets and not least the invention of the “surface-coil” (3). This development obviated the necessity to envelop the entire sample in a transmitter (receiver) coil, and opened the way to the use of 31P NMR in the diagnosis of muscle disease, in the intact human subject (4). This technique will now be used in Oxford, to examine the brain and other organs of human subjects, non-invasively, in a high field magnet of 60 cm internal diameter. Much of what has so far been achieved with 31P NMR can be classed as confirmatory when viewed from the standpoint of the metabolic biochemist or clinical investigator. Presumably this will change markedly when the metabolic measurements are made upon inaccessible internal organs and the brain in man, since then only 31P NMR is applicable in the acquisition of biochemical information.
KeywordsMetabolic Acidosis Respiratory Acidosis Mitochondrial Myopathy Saturation Transfer Perfuse Kidney
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