Library research guide to education: illustrated search strategy and sources

Sodium supports the proper functioning of the nerves by playing its role in action potentials action potentials are electrical impulses sent when the nerve cells received signals down the length of the cells hence triggering communication with the neighboring cells. During the action potentials, sodium ions rushes out of the nerve cells to initiate electrochemical impulse (Budvytyte et al, 2014).

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Why is this approach relevant or useful to understanding the loss of function in neurons?

This approach is useful to understand neurons loss of functions because lack of sodium in the blood hinders the communication of the nerves, hence deficiency of sodium can result to muscle cramps because of abnormal communication between the muscle fibers and the nerves (Budvytyte et al, 2014).

Question 2

What is the normal concentration gradient of sodium in the nervous system (should the sodium concentration be higher or lower within the cell compared to the extracellular fluid)?

For a resting neuron, there is high concentration of chlorine and sodium ions in the extracellular fluid than the intracellular fluid. However, in the intracellular fluids, there is high concentration of potassium compared to the extracellular fluid (Madelin et al, 2010).

How does the change in the sodium concentration detected from MRI of the hippocampus suggest that the neurons in the hippocampus became diseased and were not functioning properly?

To detect a neuron death, Sodium MRI imaging is used. The higher sodium (Na+) concentration indicate that there were dead or damaged cells. When making comparisons of the two images of the control patients and the Alzheimer brain, brighter areas are seen in the Alzheimer patent brain than the control patient. This is an indication of higher concentration levels of sodium and indicates dysfunction of neurons. Before the death of cells, the increased levels of sodium in the tissue could be as a result of sodium direct leak because if the Na/K ATPase retro-gradation or amyloid beta channels (Mellon et al, 2009).

What sort of a change in the Na+ concentration gradient would you expect when neurons are damaged or malfunctioning?

Only a small intracellular sodium increase would be expected to produce signal intensity change. After the death of the neurons, the space I the intracellular shrinks and the extra cellular space expands. Moreover, the extra cellular space will have a large concentration of sodium which produce a large signal intensity of sodium (Mellon et al, 2009).

Question 4

The peer reviewed article on “Sodium MR imaging detection of mild Alzheimer disease” discusses how the changes in the concentration of sodium detected from the hippocampus MRI suggest that the hippocampus neuron became diseased and does not functioning properly.

The article about “Action Potential Collision in Nerves” discusses the action Potential Collision in Nerves. I used the article in this assignment to understand what role sodium play in neuronal action.

This article “Sodium MRI with Triple Quantum Filter and Inversion Recovery at 7T” is about the current awareness in NNR in in medicine. I used the article in understanding the differences in the relative concentrations of sodium (Na+) in the hippocampus using magnetic resonance imaging (MRI).

5. In what ways are the studies similar in their method and conclusions?

All the three studies used experimental methodology in their research design. Moreover, in their conclusions, there were similarity since all of them proved their hypothesis in relation to sodium innerves.

In what ways are the studies different in their method and conclusions?

The three studies used different equipment in their data collection. For instance, in the study of “Sodium MR imaging detection of mild Alzheimer disease,” used 3T clinical scanner, in the study “Sodium MRI with Triple Quantum Filter and Inversion Recovery at 7T,” used 7T Whole Body Scanner and a single tuned Na head coil.

Question 7

What other observations might we expect to find in cases with similar issues?

The other observations expected to be found include using sodium imaging as a clinical tool in detecting neuropathologic changes that are related with Alzheimer disease

What would we want to look for in the future, now that we know what this case has taught us?

In future, we would want to look for the implementation of IR23NaMRI and TQR fir the human brain at 7T in vivo in order to assess the intracellular concentration of sodium.

Question 8

Give your resolution of the case: What does it tell us about autopoiesis in human anatomy and physiology?

My resolution is that the case is that there is a dysfunction in the neurons or cell death because of the brighter areas on the patient’s brain. Brighter areas are an indication of higher concentration levels of sodium on the neurons that have dysfunctional

On a scale of 1–5, rate how confident you are in your conclusions in questions 1 and 2.

I would rate my conclusions at 5

Question 9

Describe how you located the information you used in this case.

To begin the search, I started with the most comprehensive data base that is Cumulative Index to Nursing and Allied Health (NINAH) (Kennedy 2009). The search then continued to search engines such as British Nursing Index, MEDLINE. Moreover PubMed and NCBI were other major search engines which assisted some of the relevant articles. These search engines were used because they contained most of the peer review articles and books. To limit and narrow down the search for articles, internal searches of the databases was used by inserting full length of texts and searching the relevant articles from the list of journals displayed. Moreover, I limited myself to the current articles of up to 5 years

If you had it to do over again, what you might do differently?

I would use different resources to get different information so as to make comparisons of different studies


Budvytyte, R., Gonzalez-Perez, A., Mosgaard, L., & Heimburg, T. (January 01, 2014). Action Potential Collision in Nerves. Biophysical Journal, 106, 2.)G. Madelin, N. Oesingmann, G. Johnson, A. Jerschow, and M. Inglese (2010). Sodium MRI with Triple Quantum Filter and Inversion Recovery at 7T. [ONLINE] Available at:,d.c2E. [Last Accessed 14th November 2014].

Kennedy, J. R. (2009). Library research guide to education: illustrated search strategy and sources. Ann Arbor, Mich, Pierian Press.Mellon, E. A., Pilkinton, D. T., Clark, C. M., Elliott, M. A., Witschey, W. R. ., Borthakur, A., & Reddy, R. (January 01, 2009). Sodium MR imaging detection of mild Alzheimer disease: preliminary study. Ajnr. American Journal of Neuroradiology, 30, 5, 978-84. Retrieved from

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