Placental CO2 Exchange

  • Cassandra Wasson
  • Albert Kelly
  • David Ninan
  • Quy Tran


This chapter discusses carbon dioxide transfer of the placenta. It outlines the role of the Haldane effect.


Dissolved CO2 Carbonic acid Bicarbonate ion Carbonate ion Carbaminohemoglobin Haldane effect 
  1. 1.

    Transferred as dissolved CO2 , carbonic acid, bicarbonate ion (predominant form), carbonate ion, and carbaminohemoglobin

  2. 2.

    CO2 is 20× more diffusible than O2 and readily crosses the placenta

  3. 3.

    Only dissolved CO2 crosses the placenta. Carbonic anhydrase in RBCs convert bicarbonate ion to CO2.

  4. 4.

    CO2 transfer is augmented by the Haldane effect (higher affinity for CO2 in maternal deoxyhemoglobin than fetal oxyhemoglobin)


Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Cassandra Wasson
    • 1
  • Albert Kelly
    • 1
  • David Ninan
    • 2
  • Quy Tran
    • 3
  1. 1.Riverside University Health System - Medical CenterMoreno ValleyUSA
  2. 2.Riverside University Health System - Medical CenterLoma LindaUSA
  3. 3.Harbor–UCLA Medical CenterTorranceUSA

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