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Osmosis Is Serious Business

Nure Useinoski Dr. Bhalla BIO 1130 13 October 2010 Osmosis Is Serious Business 1. The extra fertilizer around the roots of the corn created a hypertonic (cell loses water) environment. 2. The excessive fertilizer caused the soil to turn hypertonic to the plant cell. As a result, water diffused from the plant cells into the soil by osmosis and the plant cells began to shrink. With little or no water left in the corn plant’s cells the plants wilted and eventually died. 3.

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If Michael’s mistake had been caught earlier, the removal of the fertilizer as well as more frequent watering and possibly the addition of organic fertilizer that did not contain potassium nitrate may have been used to prevent the corn from dying. 4. Watering plants using 100% H2O with no solutes added creates a isotonic or moist environment around the roots of the plant and enables the plants roots to draw up minerals through the soil faster and easier for absorption without the interference of added solutes which may slow the absorption process or even refrain the cells from absorbing the water and minerals through the roots. . Plants generally thrive in a moist or hypotonic environment because the water transports minerals through the soil to the roots where they are absorbed by the plant without the interference of additional solutes and osmotic pressure is maintained to prevent wilting or dying. Too Little, Too Late 1. The distilled water in the patient’s bloodstream created a hypotonic environment that resulted in the diffusion of water into the patient’s red blood cells. 2.

The patient’s red blood cells began to fill with water which resulted in the swelling and eventual lyse (bursting) of the red blood cells due to relatively high osmotic pressure within the red blood cell. 3. Red blood cells carry and deliver oxygen to all parts of the body, as the patients red blood cells began to swell and lyse due to the high concentration of distilled water in the bloodstream, oxygen levels began to decrease simultaneously because the red blood cells which hold and transport the oxygen began to diminish. 4.

After Tom made his error the patient’s life may have been saved in theory by injecting the patient with a slightly hypertonic solution, which would draw the water out of the red blood cells, however the efficiency of this method would depend on timing, if it is too late and the patient’s blood cells have already began to lyse and oxygen was decreasing at a rapid pace, the patient would not be able to be saved. A blood transfusion is also another method that may save the patient by restoring their red blood cells and increasing their levels of oxygen in their bloodstream.

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