Related topics: high blood pressure ยท blood pressure

Biophysicists reveal how optogenetic tool works

An international research team has for the first time obtained the structure of the light-sensitive sodium-pumping KR2 protein in its active state. The discovery provides a description of the mechanism behind the light-driven ...

Elucidating the mechanism of a light-driven sodium pump

Researchers at the Paul Scherrer Institute PSI have succeeded for the first time in recording a light-driven sodium pump from bacterial cells in action. The findings promise progress in the development of new methods in neurobiology. ...

A new solvent system: Hydrothermal molten salt

In a new report on Science Advances, T. Voisin and a research team in the Scientific Research National Center and the Institute of Technology and Energy Management in France, proposed a new solvent system. The hydrothermal ...

MRI scanning assists with next generation battery design

Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) can provide an effective way of supporting the development of the next generation of high-performance rechargeable batteries, according to research led by the University of Birmingham.

page 1 from 30

Sodium

Sodium (pronounced /ˈsoʊdiəm/) is a metallic element with a symbol Na (from Latin natrium or Arabic natrun) and atomic number 11. It is a soft, silvery-white, highly reactive metal and is a member of the alkali metals within "group 1" (formerly known as ‘group IA’). It has only one stable isotope, 23Na.

Elemental sodium was first isolated by Sir Humphry Davy in 1806 by passing an electric current through molten sodium hydroxide. Elemental sodium does not occur naturally on Earth, but quickly oxidizes in air and is violently reactive with water, so it must be stored in an inert medium, such as a liquid hydrocarbon. The free metal is used for some chemical synthesis and heat transfer applications.

Sodium ion is soluble in water in nearly all of its compounds, and is thus present in great quantities in the Earth's oceans and other stagnant bodies of water. In these bodies it is mostly counterbalanced by the chloride ion, causing evaporated ocean water solids to consist mostly of sodium chloride, or common table salt. Sodium ion is also a component of many minerals.

Sodium is an essential element for all animal life and for some plant species. In animals, sodium ions are used in opposition to potassium ions, to allow the organism to build up an electrostatic charge on cell membranes, and thus allow transmission of nerve impulses when the charge is allowed to dissipate by a moving wave of voltage change. Sodium is thus classified as a “dietary inorganic macro-mineral” for animals. Sodium's relative rarity on land is due to its solubility in water, thus causing it to be leached into bodies of long-standing water by rainfall. Such is its relatively large requirement in animals, in contrast to its relative scarcity in many inland soils, that herbivorous land animals have developed a special taste receptor for sodium ion.

This text uses material from Wikipedia, licensed under CC BY-SA