Electrolyte Transport

  • G. P. Schielke
  • A. L. Betz
Part of the Handbook of Experimental Pharmacology book series (HEP, volume 103)


A precisely regulated extracellular ionic environment in the central nervous system is vital for normal neuronal function. Thus, the processes that stabilize the concentrations of the principal electrolytes (Na, K, and Cl) in brain are of considerable importance. K is the ion most thoroughly studied, both because of its importance for neuronal function and the availability of methods for determining its concentration in interstitial fluid (ISF) in vivo. The early studies of Bito (1969) indicated that the concentration of K in the cerebrospinal fluid ([K] csf ) is maintained slightly lower than its concentration in plasma (approximately 2.8 mM and 4.4mM, respectively). Similarly, the concentration of K in the interstitial fluid ([K] isf ) the cortical gray matter is maintained between 2.6 and 3.8mM, a level that is less than that of plasma water (Katzman 1976; Somjen 1979). Although one study has found regional variations in [K] isf from 3.35 mM in the cortex to 1.95 mM in the thalamus (Moghaddam and Adams 1987) and regional variations in [K] isf may also exist (Bito 1969), in general, the [K] in the brain’s extracellular fluid is lower than its concentration in plasma.


Atrial Natriuretic Peptide Choroid Plexus Cereb Blood Flow Brain Capillary Paracellular Pathway 
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.



Atrial natriuretic pepticle


Cerebrospinal fluid


Extracellular fluid


Fluorescein isothiocyanate


Interstitial fluid


Concentration of potassium in the ISF


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© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 1992

Authors and Affiliations

  • G. P. Schielke
  • A. L. Betz

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