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Re: Aquatic Plants Digest V4 #25
In a message dated 1/12/2000 17:41:31 Pacific Standard Time,
Aquatic-Plants-Owner at actwin_com writes:
> If you committed suicide by running your car in the
> garage what kills you?
Carbon Monoxide induced suffocation. During normal respiration, CO2 (Carbon
Dioxide) binds to the hemoglobin molecule, where it is carried to the lungs.
The CO2 molecule is readily exchanged for an O2 (Oxygen) molecule, where it
is transported to the cells. Unfortunately, CO (Carbon Monoxide) binds to
the hemoglobin molecule, and is reluctant to be exchanged for an O2 molecule.
Thus, the CO will not be released from the hemoglobin molecule, and O2
cannot hitch a ride back down into the blood stream. Eventually, CO builds
up to the point that it displaces O2 in sufficient quantities to cause
suffocation - in this case, inadequate O2 to meet the body's needs. If it
continues, death ensues. I'm not sure this is relevant to CO2 buildup in
aquariums, however, since CO2 does not displace O2 in water. In fact, it is
possible to have quite high CO2 levels in water, and still have quite high O2
levels as well. This will occur during strong photosynthesis, when plants
are consuming CO2 in large quantities, and producing O2 accordingly. We've
all seen "air" bubbles coming off plants when strong light strikes them.
Those bubbles are, in fact, oxygen (O2), and indicate that the water is
saturated with O2, no matter what the high CO2 readings indicate.