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One of the most important homeostatic regulatory systems in your body is that which is involved with the precise control of your fluid’s pH or hydrogen ion concentration Changes in [H+] will effect the nervous system, high [H+] will cause neural depression, whereas a decrease in [H+] will cause hyperexcitation of the nervous system The activities of almost all enzymatic systems in the body are influenced by pH, simply because pH can result in altering the 3-D shape of a protein by interacting with its hydrogen bonds. Changing the shape of a protein will largely disrupt its function, in some cases decreasing its function and in other cases accelerating it. Changes in [H+] will effect the concentration of other ions. An excess removal of H+ from the kidneys due to its build up, will decrease the normal removal of K+. The accumulation of K+ can negatively impact cardiac function
Acid: hydrogen-containing substance that can dissociate to produce free H+ in a solution. The more H+ that is liberated the stronger the acid Base: substance that can bind with free H+ and remove it from the solution. The more H+ a substance can bind with, the stronger the base it is. The extent of dissociation of a given acid is constant and is expressed as it dissociation constant (K) K= [H+] [HCO3-] / [H2CO3]
pH = log 1/[H+] pH is expressed in a log scale. then it would hold 10 times more H+ pH is expressed on a scale that ranges from 0 to 14 with a pH of 7 considered neutral (at 25 C).Hydrogen ion concentration in a solution is expressed numerically as pH. pH is the negative log of the hydrogen ion concentration. the concentration of which varies with temperature. neutrality is when [H+] = [OH-]. If the water had a pH of 6. For water. So a pH of 7 is not always neutral . a change in 1 pH value represents a 10 fold change in [H+] For example if a liter of water contains 10-7 moles of H+. then the pH of that solution is 7.
Above 7. Below 6.4.8 or above 8. with venous blood less than arterial blood. pH of blood averages 7.35 – condition of acidosis.45 – condition of alkalosis. When blood pH fall below 7. whereas solutions with a pH above neutral (7) are considered basic or alkaline.Solutions with a pH below neutral (7) are consider acidic.0 – condition called death. .
keto acids. Inorganic acids produced during the breakdown of nutrients: sulfur and phosphorus in food can be converted to sulfuric acid and phosphoric acid. H2CO3 H+ + HCO3- product of metabolism The amount of H+ is keep in check by proper ventilation and the removal of CO2. the reaction moves in the opposite direction and H+ is combined with HCO3. the over abundance of CO2 leads to the greater production and presence of H+.a. and lactic acids. as the CO2 is removed. each of which can liberate H+. all of which can liberate free H+ .to eventually form H2O and CO2. Much of this acid is neutralized by foods which are somewhat basic. Problems arise when exhalation does not meet the metabolic production of CO2.Body fluid pH needs to be constantly monitored and regulated because the body is constantly producing H+ Sources include: Carbonic acid formation: H2O + CO2 c. Organic acids resulting from intermediary metabolism: Include fatty acids.
Defense against changes in [H+] 1. Important example: carbonic acid: bicarbonate H2CO3:HCO3When H+ increases. or bind with H+ when concentrations increase.to form H2CO3 When H+ decreases. either produce H+ when levels drop. H2CO3 dissociates into HCO3and H+ . it binds with HCO3. Chemical buffering system: Chemicals that can resist or reverse changes in pH.
The relationship between H+.164. and HCO3. Therefore by either controlling the concentration of . so pK is 6.1 + log 20/1 = 7.4 (normal plasma pH). K = 0.1 and the ratio of [HCO3-] to [CO2] is 20:1 Therefore pH = 6. if the ratio decreases. remember that K is a constant and thus so is pK (1/K) and for H2CO3 and HCO3-. CO2. pH increases.is expressed in the Henderson-Hasselbalch equation: Remember that: pH = log 1/[H+] K = [H+] [HCO3-]/[H2CO3] therefore [H+] = K x [H2CO3]/[HCO3-] And solving for pH pH = pK + log [HCO3-]/[H2CO3] given that [H2CO3] is a direct reflection of [CO2] Then pH = pK + log [HCO3-]/[CO2] the Henderson-Hasselbalch eq. then pH decreases. So if [HCO3-]/[CO2] increases.
3.Other chemical buffering systems 2. and Na2HPO4 (sodium phosphate – dibasic) can accept a H+ to increase pH . Phosphate buffering system: NaH2PO4 (sodium phosphate – monobasic) can unload a H+ to decrease pH. Hemoglobin buffering system: H+ can bind with hemoglobin and therefore not contribute to the acidity of the tissue or fluid. Protein buffering system: both acidic and basic proteins based on their amino acid configuration. 4. Most important in regulating [H+] intracellularly.
such as from disease. With an increase in ventilation. a decrease in ventilation allows CO2 to accumulate in the body. On the other hand. due to CO2 in the brain (central chemoreceptors) in the blood (peripheral chemoreceptors).Respiration and renal function are also important means by which we regulate acid:base balance. thereby decrease the amount of H2CO3 that is made and thus the amount of H+ that is liberated. But if the source of H+ is not the CO2. then the central chemoreceptors which are now going to reduce ventilation are working against the peripheral chemoreceptors which are still sensing an elevated level of H +. Another problem can arise if normal lung function is impaired. this triggers an increase in ventilation. CO2 is reduced. Respiration: Ventilation has control on H+ by determining the level of CO2 within the body. . thereby increasing the amount of H2CO3 and thus the amount of free H+. An increase in ventilation will remove a greater amount of CO2. To maintain the proper balance of H+. ventilation must match CO2 production. If CO2 increases.
The CO2 can originate from the plasma or the urine. Urine has a normal pH of about 6. .that enters into the plasma can serve to buffer free H+.within the tubular cells by the addition of H2O and CO2. or from cellular metabolism. Much of the H+ excreted with the urine is secreted into the tubules from the surrounding interstitial fluid and perivascular system.0. The amount of H+ secreted is a function of plasma [H+]. H+ is actively pumped out of the cells. but can vary depending on the amount of secreted H+. whereas the HCO3. The basic means by which H+ is secreted is from the production of H+ and HCO3. Kidneys actually filtered a small amount of H+ (due to its low concentration in the plasma) and do not reabsorb any of the H+ that is filtered. Together with water it forms H+ and HCO3-. The HCO3.Kidneys are a very potent acid-base regulators Kidneys have the ability to directly add or remove H+ and HCO3-. the more H+ in plasma the more that is secreted into the tubules.enters into the plasma.
HCO3. Regardless of the apparent recycling of H+.joins with secreted H+ to form H2CO3 which dissociated into H2O and CO2.can be added to the plasma either by its reabsorption from the urine or by the production of new HCO3-. H+ is pumped out of the cell and into the urine.moves into the capillaries and is essentially reabsorbed. Within the tubular fluid.is filtered. whereas the HCO3. some of it is actually excreted .Kidney regulation of plasma HCO3HCO3. which can diffuse into the tubular cell. the HCO3. There they form H2CO3 and thus H+ and HCO3-. but it can not be directly reabsorbed because the tubular membrane is impermeable to HCO3-.
HCO3. The secreted H+ binds with other buffers (phosphate) and is excreted. .can also be made within the tubular cells and pass to the capillaries to buffer H+. The source of the H2O and CO2 is the tubular cells themselves. H+ can bind with ammonia(NH3) within the urine to produce ammonium ion (NH4+) which is lost in the urine. In addition.
therefore there are four categories of acid-base imbalance: respiratory acidosis. arising from an elevation in [HCO3-] . Anytime the [HCO3-]/[CO2] ratio falls below 20/1 an acidosis exists and anytime the ratio is above 20/1 an alkalosis exists. associated with a fall in [HCO3-] Metabolic alkalosis – ratio less than 20/1. and metabolic alkalosis. Respiratory acidosis – ratio less than 20/1 arising from an increase in CO2 Respiratory alkalosis – ratio greater than 20/1 due to a decrease in CO2 Metabolic acidosis – ratio less than 20/1.Acid – base imbalances Imbalances could either be conditions of acidosis or alkalosis and either have its source with respiration or metabolism. respiratory alkalosis. metabolic acidosis. Couple rules of thumb: A respiratory cause of an imbalance pH is associated with an abnormal [CO2]. giving rise to a carbonic acid-generated change in H+ A metabolic origin in deviated pH is associated with an abnormal [HCO3-].
The kidneys can reabsorb and produce HCO3-. depression of ventilation by drugs or nervous disorders. First line of defense are the chemical buffers present (HCO3-). so it’s of little help. which within the plasma can buffer the H+.Respiratory acidosis Due to an abnormal retention of CO2. commonly from hypoventilation (CO2 production exceeds CO2 expulsion). But ventilation is the source of the problem. The increase CO2 produces H2CO3 which dissociated into H+ and HCO3-. Normally the second line of defense is changes in ventilation. and simply by holding one’s breath. . The next line of defense has to be the kidneys. This can be brought on by impaired lung function from lung diseases.
Consequently less H2CO3 is formed. the kidneys conserve H+ and excrete HCO3-. . Immediate treatment for someone that is hyperventilating is to have them breath into a bag. too much CO2 is blown off. thereby reducing the amount of CO2 that is removed from the lungs. Compensatory measures serve to conserve or increase [H+].Respiratory alkalosis The primary cause is the excessive loss of CO2 from the body as a result of hyperventilation (CO2 expulsion exceeds CO2 production). and [H+] decreases. When pulmonary ventilation increases out of proportion to the rate of CO2 production. This serves to recycle CO2.
. Severe diarrhea: during digestion your GI tract secretes a lot of HCO3to buffer the acid contents of your stomach as it enters the small intestine. Also there is a reduced ability to produce HCO3-.is reabsorbed.(except for uremic acidosis). Usually this HCO3. Causes include. Uremic acidosis: Renal failure results in a reduced ability to eliminate H+. Acid intake: the excessive intake of acidic food and drugs (aspirin) Compensation includes both increase ventilation (remove CO2 and thus H+) and renal excretion of H+ and production of HCO3. resulting in an accumulation of H+. Strenuous exercise: the over production of lactic acid Diabetes mellitus: an increase in fat metabolism over glucose metabolism leads to the production of keto acids.Metabolic acidosis Includes a variety of causes that results in acidosis independent of an excess of CO2 in the body. but may not have a chance to do so if gut contents are rapidly being excreted.
Respiratory and renal compensation of metabolic acidosis .
but the HCO3that was produced is still there and thus will not be used to neutralize the stomach acid. and associated increase in [HCO3-].which moves into the plasma and is eventually used to neutral the H+ as it enters into the small intestine. With vomiting. the stomach acid is removed from the body. Result in a build up of HCO3Ingestion of alkaline drugs: ingesting baking soda and anti-acids adds additional HCO3.Metabolic alkalosis This is a reduction in plasma [H+] caused by a relative decline in noncarbonic acids. Compensation: chemical buffering system releases H+ and ventilation is reduced to build up H+. increase pH.to the body and binds with free H+. The kidney may eventually start to conserve H+ and excrete more HCO3- . Causes: Vomiting: The production of gastric acid (HCl) involves the production of HCO3.
due to elevated gastric acid production capillary Parietal cells H2O CO2 HCO3ClH2 O H+ HCl K+ Cl- H2CO3 K+ Intracellular pH = 7. The resulting increase in H+ counters the increase in plasma HCO3- .Alkaline Tide Increase in plasma HCO3.4 pH = 1 (million-fold increase in H +) The increase in plasma [HCO3-] would seemingly increase plasma pH Alligator plasma pH Hours postfeeding For pythons and other air breathing vertebrates that also each big meals. Instead there is an increase PaCO2. plasma pH does not change. due to hypoventilation.
Acid-base nomogram (Davenport diagram) .
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