Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Camp Concentration 003 - c-AMP

(a Polish edition)

Talk about serendipity, talk about statistical fate. Some coincidences are inevitable, and being so, are they really coincidences?

I googled the title “Camp Concentration” in search of jpgs to illustrate these notes, and came across an unexpected response: “cAMP Concentration”. Among esoteric laboratorial procedures, this term appeared insistently, forcing me to fish out a definition for “c-AMP”, which follows:


c-AMP (cyclic AMP) A cyclic form of adenosine monophosphate, formed from ATP (adenosine triphosphate) in a reaction mediated (catalysed) by adenyl cyclase, which has numerous functions in cells. It can act variously as a genetic regulator, as a mediator in the activity of some hormones, as an enzyme activator, as a secondary messenger, and as a chemical attractant.© A Dictionary of Zoology 1999, originally published by Oxford University Press 1999

So, this is the second definition for camp which I submit in this blog. C-amp is something that, once circulating inside an organism, boosts some of its vital functions. As to the specific expression “c-Amp concentration”, I got, among other results, these:

Summary cAMP concentrations in the preoptic region and cerebral cortex were studied in rats during exposure to low ambient temperature (–10 ° C) and after return to control ambient temperature (22 ° C).
Significant changes in cAMP concentration were found only in the preoptic region. On prolonged exposure to low ambient temperature the nucleotide concentration decreased and the circadian rhythm, observed in control conditions, disappeared. Return to control ambient temperature after exposure to low ambient temperature induced a steep increase and a long-lasting plateau in cAMP concentration. The results are discussed in terms of interaction between thermoregulatory and sleep-wakefulness processes.

The effect of NaF on the cAMP concentration in and amylase secretion from rat parotid glands in vitro and in vivo was investigated. In vitro, NaF (0.05 to 10 mmol/l) was found to increase significantly amylase secretion and cAMP concentration in parotid gland slices. In vivo, male rats injected intraperitoneally with 15 mg F/kg body weight as NaF had a significantly lower glandular amylase activity and higher plasma amylase activity than did the control rats injected with 0.9% NaCl. The fluoride concentration both in the parotid gland and plasma was highest at 30 min after injection and decreased with time in the fluoride-injected group. The concentration of the parotid gland cAMP in the fluoride-injected group was significantly higher than that in the control group. On the basis of these results, it is suggested that NaF, both in vitro and in vivo, increases the cAMP concentration, which subsequently stimulates amylase secretion from rat parotid glands.

I paste these examples just to make clear the double-pun nature of Disch’s title. Disch probably came across, in some scientific journal, an article like those above, and couldn’t fail to perceive the hilarious/sadistic connotation of it. Being himself “a psychologist who wouldn’t do awful things to rats”, TMD wrote a novel.

QUOTE: "They've got to break away from the old patterns of thought, blaze trails, explore" (CC, p. 50, June 10 entry)

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