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J Am Soc Nephrol. 2011 Nov;22(11):1981-9. doi: 10.1681/ASN.2011040414. Epub 2011 Oct 6.

Effects of pH on potassium: new explanations for old observations.

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  • 1Section of Nephrology, Department of Internal Medicine, Yale University School of Medicine, New Haven, CT 06520-8029, USA.


Maintenance of extracellular K(+) concentration within a narrow range is vital for numerous cell functions, particularly electrical excitability of heart and muscle. Potassium homeostasis during intermittent ingestion of K(+) involves rapid redistribution of K(+) into the intracellular space to minimize increases in extracellular K(+) concentration, and ultimate elimination of the K(+) load by renal excretion. Recent years have seen great progress in identifying the transporters and channels involved in renal and extrarenal K(+) homeostasis. Here we apply these advances in molecular physiology to understand how acid-base disturbances affect serum potassium.

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