how insulin and beta agonist causes shift of K+ into cell?(causing hypokalemia)? - USMLE Forums
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Old 03-28-2013
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Question how insulin and beta agonist causes shift of K+ into cell?(causing hypokalemia)?

1. Insulin

2. Beta agonist.

According to first aid it increases na/k/atpase.

But where and for what?or what process?mechanism?
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Old 03-29-2013
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Costanzo Physiology has an EXCELLENT section on everything you need to know about changes in Potassium influx/efflux from cells, with regard to multiple factors (including beta agonists and insulin)

when i get home later tonight, i'll make a nice summary for you, because i think its important to remember.

You are correct, Insulin does increase the activity of Na/K+ pump. go back and think how Insulin acts!! remember, via the tyrosine kinase recpetors, then that phosophorylates itself, and then the kinase activates yet other ezymes.

now what are the functions of these enzymes? A LOT!!! well, one of them is to direct the insertion of more Na/K+ channels in the membrane. and the more Na/K channels, that means the more K you have INFLUXING into the cell, which is the mechanism of how Insulin causes Hypokalemia.

as a side note, remember that your body better do a dam good job of keeping Potassium in check (proper levels), too high? good bye sweat heart. too low? not good either.

so think about it logically! when you eat food, obviously you're taking in some potassium from the diet too. and when u eat, u know that the glucose will stimulate insulin secretion, and guess what the insulin does to all that K+ u just ingested too...well, it you guessed correct! it shoves it into cells (via the mchamis described above). ---> this ensures that you don't get hyperkalemia every time you eat a meal!!! that wouldn't be good!! Thank you Insuilin, u da man!

will post later this evening about all other factors causing K+ influx/efflux. once you get the mechaninsms down, you don't have to memorize anything! i can garuanee this!
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Old 03-29-2013
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ok, while we're at it, lets do the same for beta agonists too!

again, no memorization needed! (btw, pls double check me on this, but i think its correct)


you know beta agonist causes hypokalemia. ok, good. thats all you need to memorize. if you know that, then you will automatically know how the following effect Potassium:

beta antagonists
alpha agonists
and alpha antagonists


u know what beta agonist does. well, alpha agonist does the opposite

and if u know what the above two do, u know now what the ANTAGONISTS for each do.
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