Demonstrating Human Buffering
Location: Outside U.S.
Country: Costa Rica
Date: Fall 2013
How can you prove that our body is a natural buffer solution?
Thanks for the question. It is not ethical to conduct certain types of experiments on humans. By "certain types of experiments", I mean experiments which do not have outcomes that would have the possibility to significantly improve the human condition. The experiment that would be required by your question is in this class.
The blood and lymph in a human are indeed buffer solutions. The definition of a buffer solution is a solution which has a weak acid and its conjugate base. There are several weak acids and their conjugate bases in bodily fluids. Here are some examples: carbonic acid, phosphoric acid (2nd proton to dissociate), acetic acid, fatty acids, and bone. Yes, bone contributes to the buffer capacity of the blood. This fact is only taught in medical school.
I hope this helps. Please let me know if you have more questions.
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Update: November 2011