The influence of metabolic inhibitors and low temperatures upon D-xylose transfer has been studied in rat diaphragm muscle preparations in vitro. Using intact fiber preparations, it has been confirmed that at body temperature metabolic inhibitors like DNP have an insulin-like action in that they permit D-xylose to distribute into previously unavailable intracellular aqueous regions; inhibitors, unlike insulin, disturb cation distribution in association with increased sugar penetration. Although the studies with inhibitors suggest an energy requirement for maintenance of D-xylose exclusion, the D-xylose exclusion mechanism is effectively maintained at 0° for many hours, and under these conditions, inhibitors have little or no effect on D-xylose distribution, though they do produce potassium loss. In cut muscle fiber preparations, in which insulin significantly increases the rate at which D-xylose equilibrates between cell water and external medium, DNP does not increase the rate of D-xylose entry, but does abolish the effect of insulin in this preparation. The results suggest that insulin action upon sugar permeability in muscle involves two barrier systems; some of the characteristics of these systems have been defined.

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