Variation with Age of Shrinkage Temperature of Human Collagen

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DURING the course of an investigation of hydro-thermal shrinkage temperatures of human tissue, we examined many samples of different ages. Small fibres were teased out from the tissue immersed in 0.9 per cent sodium chloride solution and transferred with salt solution to a capillary tube. This was placed in a micro-melting point apparatus (Gallenkamp) and the shrinkage temperature determined by viewing under low magnification. The voltage across the heating element was controlled by a rheostat to give a rise of not more than 2 deg. per min. The temperatures at which the fibres started and finished shrinking were designated Ts 1 and Ts 2 respectively. Samples were taken from dura mater or fascia lata at autopsy or at operation from cases not suffering from ‘connective tissue’ disease and were examined without delay. In saline, fibres from either tissue from any one individual shrunk over the same range, and there was no difference between different fibres from one tissue. Results are given in Table 1.

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BROWN, P., CONSDEN, R. Variation with Age of Shrinkage Temperature of Human Collagen. Nature 181, 349–350 (1958) doi:10.1038/181349a0

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