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Cell Biology International (2006) 30, 74–77 (Printed in Great Britain)
On the osmotically unresponsive water compartment in cells
Gary D. Fullertona*, Kalpana M. Kanala and Ivan L. Cameronb
aDepartment of Radiology, The University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio, Floyd Curl Drive, San Antonio, TX, USA
bDepartment of Cellular and Structural Biology, The University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio, Floyd Curl Drive, San Antonio, TX, USA


Abstract

Differences in colligative properties (freezing point, boiling point, vapor pressure and osmotic behavior) between water in living cells and pure bulk water were investigated by re-evaluating reports of the osmotic behavior of mammalian cells. In five different animal cells, osmotically unresponsive water (OUW) values ranged from 1.1 to 2.2g per g dry mass. Detailed analysis of human red blood cell (RBC) data indicates a major role for hemoglobin OUW-values, aggregation and packing in cell volume regulation that can be explained for the first time in relevant molecular terms.


Key words: Osmosis, Interfacial water, Osmotically unresponsive water, Cell water.

*Corresponding author.


Received 25 July 2005; accepted 30 September 2005

doi:10.1016/j.cellbi.2005.09.007


ISSN Print: 1065-6995
ISSN Electronic: 1095-8355
Published by Portland Press Limited on behalf of the International Federation for Cell Biology (IFCB)