On Tue, 28 Jan 1997, Sven Haul wrote:
> >>Anthonie Muller <awjm at holyrood.ed.ac.uk> wrote:
>> >>My explanation it that lack of oxygen causes a decrease of
> >>ATP, which in
> >>turn makes it impossible to keep up the nerve membrane
> >>leading to an action potential which makes you feel the
> >>local absence of
>> This seems unlikely to mee. The cell tries to keep up the
> membrane potential as long as possible. So if the ATP
> shortage is prominent enough to cause a drop of membrane
> potential by about 30 mV other damages should have occured
> before, and should be noticeable afterwards.
> Sven E. Haul Heinrich-Heine-University
> Institute of Neurophysiology Duesseldorf, Germany
Maybe it is nonsense to get involved in a subject where I know little
about; maybe I'd better browse around in the library.
I vaguely remember having read that during a stroke the cellular damage is
caused by an influx of Ca2+ in the cytoplasm, the reason being that no ATP
is available to pump Ca; the absence of ATP is in turn caused by an
impedement of respiration by an absence of oxygen due to a restriction in
I imagine that something similar can happen in a sleepy leg.
The brain seems to react very fast to an absence of oxygenated blood: it
becomes black before your eyes. But I do not know about other tissue.
To return to the leg: during a decrease in ATP it would make sense to
effect a signal to the brain first, i.e., to let this have a high ATP
treshold, and to let irreversible damage occur at lower ATP levels. This
obviously would give the body time to react.
By the way: in the absence of oxygen the leg could obtain ATP from
fermentation. The resulting lactic acid might also cause a signal ...
Hoping that I am not wasting yours and everyone else's time ...
The Thermosynthesis Home Page