Buffering in human tears: pH responses to acid and base challenge

Carney, Leo G., Mauger, Thomas F., & Hill, Richard M. (1989) Buffering in human tears: pH responses to acid and base challenge. Investigative Ophthalmology and Visual Science, 30(4), pp. 747-754.


The buffering capacity of tears collected from six young, healthy subjects was assessed using a microtitration technique. Each subject provided, on six separate occasions, about 100 microliter of tears, collected in small amounts and with minimal mechanical stimulation over several hours. The pH of the total stirred pool of tears from each subject was determined at the outset. This pool of tears was then divided into two equal volume aliquots, the pH of each being determined following each titration step of one of them with acid, and of the other with base. In all, 28 titration steps across the acid-base spectrum were completed for each patient pool collected. A total of 1044 tear pH measurements were made, all being done in a closed, temperature stabilized (36 degrees C) microelectrode chamber having an accuracy of within 0.04 pH units. For a comparative reference, an identical titration procedure was used on degassed, demineralized distilled water (348 pH determinations). Buffering capacity was found to show considerable intersubject variations, but in all cases the effect was more pronounced and more uniform following acid titration. Local zones of enhanced buffering across the pH spectrum could be identified, presumably reflecting the multiple buffering components (bicarbonate, protein and others) present in tear fluid.

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16 citations in Web of Science®
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ID Code: 3162
Item Type: Journal Article
Refereed: Yes
Additional Information: For more information, please refer to the journal’s website (see link) or contact the author. Author contact details: l.carney@qut.edu.au
Additional URLs:
Keywords: Hydrochloric Acid/, pharmacology, Sodium Hydroxide/, pharmacology, Tears/, metabolism, Adult, Buffers, Comparative Study, Humans, Hydrogen, Ion Concentration, Research Support, Non, U, S, Gov't, Research Support, U, S, Gov't, P, H, S
ISSN: 0146-0404
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > MEDICAL AND HEALTH SCIENCES (110000) > OPTOMETRY AND OPHTHALMOLOGY (111300)
Divisions: Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Faculty of Health
Current > Institutes > Institute of Health and Biomedical Innovation
Copyright Owner: Copyright 1989 Association for Research in Vision and Ophthalmology
Deposited On: 30 Jan 2006 00:00
Last Modified: 15 Jan 2009 06:54

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