A life of Ernest Starling by John Henderson

By John Henderson

Ernest Starling (1866-1927) was once pre-eminent within the golden age of British body structure. His identify is mostly linked to his legislation of the guts, yet his discovery of secretin (the first hormone whose mode of motion used to be defined) and his paintings on capillaries have been extra vital contributions. He coined the notice 'hormone' 100 years in the past. His research of capillary functionality verified that equivalent and opposite Read more...

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The authors then asked a slightly subtler question—^what was the effect of changing the osmotic strength of fluid put into the cavity? 9% saline, should not be absorbed, for there would be no osmotic gradient for the water to pass down. 2% solution, although this more slowly. They tried the effect of putting serum in to the cavity, and it was not absorbed. 9% saline and the serum with respect to their osmotic activity? Hearts and Capillaries 37 For some reason, Starling and Tubby do not ask this question in their paper.

Thus, the fluid that passes o u t of capillaries is blood without cells a n d most of its proteins. T h e fluid passes o u t of the capillary because of hydrostatic pressure within the capillary (20-30 millimeters of mercury) that is derived from the contraction of the heart. If the capillary pressure is raised, the outward m o v e m e n t of fluid increases (it would have m a d e many of Starling's experiments simpler h a d h e b e e n able to measure this pressure directly, b u t this was n o t achieved until a b o u t 30 years later by E u g e n e Landis, in Pennsylvania).

It did, and it became clear that lymph protein increased when the proportion of liver lymph increased. There was no need to involve any secretory process in lymph formation in this situation; the different permeability of liver and intestinal capillaries to proteins could satisfactorily explain the findings. Writing about these results in his paper of 1894, he lamented: Almost in despair, I thought of applying a further test to Heidenhain's view as the source of the lymph obtained under these circumstances [occlusion of the inferior vena cava] .

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