Determination of Microvessel Permeability and Tissue Diffusion Coefficient of Solutes by Laser Scanning Confocal Microscopy

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Interstitium contains a matrix of fibrous molecules that creates considerable resistance to water and solutes in series with the microvessel wall. On the basis of our preliminary studies, by using laser-scanning confocal microscopy and a theoretical model for interstitial transport, we determined both microvessel solute permeability (P) and solute tissue diffusion coefficient (D) of alpha-lactalbumin (Stokes radius 2.01 nm) from the rate of tissue solute accumulation and the radial concentration gradient around individually perfused microvessel in frog mesentery. P(alpha-lactalbumin) is 1.7 +/- 0.7(SD) x 10(-6) cm/s (n = 6). D(t)/D(free) for alpha-lactalbumin is 27% +/- 5% (SD) (n = 6). This value of D(t)/D(free) is comparable to that for small solute sodium fluorescein (Stokes radius 0.45 nm), while p(alpha-lactalbumin) is only 3.4% of p(sodium fluorescein). Our results suggest that frog mesenteric tissue is much less selective to solutes than the microvessel wall.


Biomechanics and Biotransport | Biomedical Engineering and Bioengineering | Mechanical Engineering | Molecular, Cellular, and Tissue Engineering


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