s -Block Elements

Biological significance of Na, K, Mg and Ca

Sodium and Potassium :

  • In blood plasma, Na+ ions are present to the extent of 143 mmol L−1, while the concentration of K+ ions is only 5 mmol L−1
  • These ions help in the transmission of nerve signals, in regulating the flow of water across cell membranes and in the transport of sugars and amino acids into the cells.
  • K+ ions activate many enzymes and participate in the oxidation of glucose to produce ATP.

Magnesium and Calcium :

  • Mg+2 ions are concentrated in animal cells and Ca+2 ions are concentrated in the body fluids outside the cell.
  • Energy is stored in the form of phosphate linkages in ATP.
  • Mg+2 ions are present in chlorophyll-a green coloring pigment in plants.
  • Ca+2 ions are present in bones and teeth as apatite and the enamel on teeth as fluorapatite.
  • Ca+2 ions are important in blood clotting and to maintain the regular beating of the heart.

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