Upon activation, an internal hydrostatic pressure develops within the Fundulus egg, and compresses the egg proper to a reduced volume. When the perivitelline pressure is abolished by a highly hypertonic sucrose solution, the egg volume increases. As sucrose penetrates the chorion, the volume again decreases. The relation between P and V in these conditions is inverse, and approximates a rectangular hyperbola. The limiting factor causing most of the deviation is shown to be the incompressible fraction. It is concluded that the volume of the egg proper is controlled by the perivitelline pressure, and that the effect of hypertonic sucrose solution is exerted by lowering the pressure and thereby increasing membrane permeability non-specifically. It is also shown that some permanent alterations occur within the plasma membrane during activation that reduce the permeance, and thereby, increase the incompressible fraction.

This content is only available as a PDF.