Following whole-body x-irradiation (600 R) of rabbits, there was an accumulation of calcium and magnesium ions in the whole blood and in the red blood cells. Pyruvate kinase activity and pyruvate concentration were decreased in the erythrocytes from the irradiated animals while the level of phosphoenolpyruvate was increased following x-irradiation. Erythrocytic pyruvate kinase was also found to be inhibited by high calcium ion concentrations. The results showed an accumulation of calcium and magnesium ions in the red blood cells after irradiation which may result in the decrease in pyruvate kinase activity and, hence, in the erythrocyte glycolytic capacity, previously observed following x-irradiation.

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