Monday, December 02, 2013

A CRITICAL CONTRACTION FREQUENCY IN LYMPHATIC VESSELS: TRANSITION TO A STATE OF PARTIAL SUMMATION

A CRITICAL CONTRACTION FREQUENCY IN LYMPHATIC VESSELS: TRANSITION TO A STATE OF PARTIAL SUMMATION

The lymphatic system helps maintain homeostasis of liquids in the body by fighting infections, targeting the immune system, as well as cleansing the body of toxins and unwanted material. Active lymphatic pumping and regulation of fluids play significant roles in the wellbeing of the body. As a result, this article presents the study of how lymphatic vessel’s contraction behaves. The author uses bovine lymphatic vessel for the experiment. The method basically carries out as the 1% albumin physiological saline solution is added periodically into a tissue bath contained the vessel in order to create a period of action potential in the membrane of the vessel. The contraction of the vessel is studied as the solution is added and the contraction time period is also recorded. The relationship between diameter of the vessel, the generating force, and the tension is built based on both physical and biological aspects. In addition, the author uses knowledge from already-known type of vessels such as skeletal, vascular, and cardiac vessel in order to compare and make hypothesis for lymphatic vessel. The result proves that the uniqueness of lymphatic vessel’s contraction is a combination of both incomplete relaxation and electrical summation. Moreover, the duration of the lymphatic vessel’s contraction happens in a physiological range. Finally, all of the mentioned results are originated from the slow rate of relaxation and periodic spontaneous contractions of lymphatic vessels.

I am interested in this article since I am doing an experiment which is fairly similar to the one this article describes.  Working in a Debakey research team, I and my teammates are setting up the experiment in order to study the rat’s lymphatic vessel’s behaviors. We use myography apparatus to collect contraction data from the vessel. There are also some small changes and adjustments in our method comparing this article’s method. Beside my experiment, this article helps me to understand deeper about vessel’s contraction behaviors and membrane’s potential mechanism.


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