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Plant Physiol. 1973 May;51(5):914-6.

The osmotic potential of polyethylene glycol 6000.

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Department of Botany, University of Georgia, Athens, Georgia 30601.


Osmotic potential (psi(s)) of aqueous solutions of polyethylene glycol 6000 (PEG-6000) was curvilinearly related to concentration. At given concentrations, psi(s) increased linearly with temperature. The effects of concentration and temperature on psi(s) of PEG-6000 solutions differ from those for most salts and sugars and apparently are related to structural changes in the PEG polymer. Measurements of psi(s) with thermocouple psychrometers are more negative than those with a vapor pressure osmometer, with the psychrometer probably giving the more nearly correct psi(s) for bulk solutions. An empirical equation permits calculation of psi(s) from known concentrations of PEG-6000 over a temperature range of 15 to 35 C. Viscometery and gravimetric analysis are convenient methods by which the concentrations of PEG-6000 solutions may be measured.


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