1. Under certain conditions, general autolysis does not begin immediately upon the removal of the organ from its circulation. This latent period is more apt to be present in those cases in which the tissues have been temporarily cooled on account of the use of a cold saline diluent or in which the percentage concentration of the inorganic salts (calcium or potassium), of the tissues have been changed by dilution with a sodium chloride solution. The presence of blood and absence of fats and of glycogen in the cells act as important factors in prolonging the latent period.

2. Attempts to produce an alkaline reaction (phenolphthalein) in the tissue resulted negatively. Solutions of disodium hydrogen phosphate and of sodium bicarbonate when added to the liver tissues gave a mixture which was acid to phenolphthalein and had no apparent effect upon autolysis.

3. The addition of antiseptics—chloroform and toluol—markedly decreased the rate of autolysis. Ordinary light produced no effect.

4. Ethyl butyrate when added to the tissue became hydrolysed into butyric acid; the formation of this acid in the mixture caused a decided acceleration in the autolytic rate. The acidity of a solution of dihydrogen sodium phosphate failed to produce a similar result.

5. The figures for the changes in the depression of the freezing-point, non-coaguable nitrogen and reaction of the autolytic mixture do not parallel one another. In some experiments a marked increase in the depression of the freezing-point was unaccompanied by augmentation of non-coagulable nitrogen.

6. General autolysis is the sum total of proteolytic, amylolytic and lipolytic factors. Each of these autolytic factors may proceed alone for a time; the rate of one is decidedly influenced by the presence or absence of the others. The acid products which are the result of amylolytic (lactic acid) and of lipolytic (higher fatty acids) autolysis, exert a pronounced augmentative effect upon the commencement and rate of nitrogenous autolysis.

This content is only available as a PDF.