Lecture 1- Diffusion

Fluid flows from one area to another much faster and

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Fluid flows from one area to another Much faster and much more efficient than diffusion Laws of physics and chemistry as physiological constraints: diffusion We often want to estimate the time required for diffusion over a given distance by  different ions, atoms, or molecules in physiologically relevant solutions  BY DIFFUSION  ALONE Ex. how fast does a glucose molecule move through water alone? Neurotransmitter across synapse O2 molecule to capillary These distances are often small, and also include a concentration gradient The most important variable is  TEMPERATURE This is because the KE of the molecules is reflected in the temperature
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Implications are that you can tell how fast a molecule is moving At room temperature, an O2 or CO2 molecule can move at around 500 m/s This is exceedingly fast, yet diffusion is slow – why is this the case?  Random motion Each molecule is moving with a high velocity but it cannot move far because it collides  with another molecule The direction taken by any molecule after a collision is purely random
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