Measurement of water transport during freezing in mammalian liver tissue: Part II-the use of differential scanning calorimetry

R. V. Devireddy, John C Bischof

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There is currently a need for experimental techniques to assay the biophysical response (water transport or intracellular ice formation, IIF) during freezing in the cells of whole tissue slices. These data are important in understanding and optimizing biomedical applications of freezing, particularly in cryosurgery. This study presents a new technique using a Differential Scanning Calorimeter (DSC) to obtain dynamic and quantitative water transport data in whole tissue slices during freezing. Sprague- Dawley rat liver tissue was chosen as our model system. The DSC was used to monitor quantitatively the heat released by water transported from the unfrozen cell cytoplasm to the partially frozen vascular/extracellular space at 5 ° C/min. This technique was previously described for use in a single cell suspension system (Devireddy, et al. 1998). A model of water transport was fit to the DSC data using a nonlinear regression curve-fitting technique, which assumes that the rat liver tissue behaves as a two-compartment Krogh cylinder model. The biophysical parameters of water transport for rat liver tissue at 5 ° C/min were obtained as Lpg = 3.16 × 10-13 m3/Ns (1.9 μ m/min-atm), ELp = 265 kf/mole (63.4 kcal/mole), respectively. These results compare favorably to water transport parameters in whole liver tissue reported in the first part of this study obtained using a freeze substitution (FS) microscopy technique (Pazhayannur and Bischof 1997). The DSC technique is shown to be a fast, quantitative, and reproducible technique to measure dynamic water transport in tissue systems. However, there are several limitations to the DSC technique: (a) a priori knowledge that the biophysical response is in fact water transport, (b) the technique cannot be used due to machine limitations at cooling rates greater than 40 ° C/min, and (c) the tissue geometric dimensions (the Krogh model dimensions) and the osmotically inactive cell volumes Vb, must be determined by low-temperature microscopy techniques.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)559-569
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of biomechanical engineering
Issue number5
StatePublished - Oct 1998


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