Author Posting. © New York Academy of Sciences 1982. This is the author's version of the work. It is posted here by permission of the New York Academy of Sciences for personal use, not for redistribution. The definitive version was published in Annals of the New York Academy of Science, Volume 394, October 1, 1982, pages 188-209. http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/j.1749-6632.1982.tb37428.x
NOTE: At the time of publication, the author Susan C. Opava-Stitzer was affiliated with the University of Puerto Rico School of Medicine - San Juan, Puerto Rico. Currently, May 2008, she is Dean of Research and Graduate Programs at California Polytechnic State University - San Luis Obispo.
Since its discovery in 1961, it has become apparent that the Brattleboro (DI) rat is a useful model for the study of a variety of physiological problems in addition to the obvious one of the role of antidiuretic hormone (vasopressin, ADH) in urine concentration and water balance. In the study of the control of extracellular fluid volume and electrolyte balance, in particular, the DI rat offers a unique opportunity to observe the spontaneous interaction of homeostatic mechanisms when a single disturbance, namely the absence of ADH, has been introduced.
This review will attempt to present a comprehensive description of the state of sodium and potassium balance in the DI rat. Although some data exist on the handling of other electrolytes these have not been studied extensively. Mention will also be made of the multiple factors that may influence electrolyte balance in the Brattleboro rat. New data, obtained by Opava-Stitzer and Fernandez-Repollet, will be included when relevant.