Branchial Ion Transfer Processes as Mechanisms for Fish Acid-Base Regulation

  • N. Heisler
Conference paper
Part of the Proceedings in Life Sciences book series (LIFE SCIENCES)


More than terrestrial animals, fishes are subject to environmentally-induced disturbances of the acid-base status. Furthermore, some of the classical measures available for transient acid-base regulation are very much reduced in their efficiency in water-breathing fishes. This is primarily related to the low solubility of oxygen in water, which is, depending on temperature, 20–40 times less than the equivalent capacitance of air. Accordingly water-breathing fish are forced to ventilate their gills at a rate 20–40 times higher than a comparable air-breathing species with the same oxygen consumption and extraction ratio. Also, reductions in environmental water PO2 are encountered by fish much more frequently and to a much larger extent than by air breathers, even at altitude or during borrowing.


Gill Epithelium Gill Ventilation Plasma Bicarbonate Concentration Conger Conger Environmental Hypercapnia 
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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 1985

Authors and Affiliations

  • N. Heisler
    • 1
  1. 1.Abteilung PhysiologieMax-Planck-Institut f. experimentelle MedizinGöttingenGermany

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