Letter | Published:

Carbon Monoxide Poisoning in the Absence of Hæmoglobin


WARBURG (Biochem. Zeit., 177, p. 471 ; 1926) has shown that carbon monoxide depresses the rate of oxygen consumption by yeasts and a micrococcus, and that the amount of carbon monoxide required to produce a given effect increases with the partial pressure of oxygen. He concluded that carbon monoxide competes with oxygen for a catalyst concerned in respiration, as it does for hæmoglobin in vertebrates. He also showed that the affinity of oxygen for this substance is 7–14 times that of carbon monoxide, instead of 1/150 to 1/550 as in the case of hæmoglobin at 15°C., and that, like carbon monoxide hæmoglobin, the compound formed with carbon monoxide is dissociated by light.

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