Liquid Water in Frozen Tissue: Study by Nuclear Magnetic Resonance

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Science  21 Jan 1966:
Vol. 151, Issue 3708, pp. 324-325
DOI: 10.1126/science.151.3708.324


Nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectroscopy was used to examine the behavior and extent of liquid water in postrigor-frozen tissue of cod at temperatures below 0°C. A liquid-water phase persists in the tissue down to about -70°C; the extent of the phase decreases rapidly between 0° and -10°C and slowly at lower temperatures. That the NMR absorption peak of the liquid water increases in width, with decreasing temperature, suggests loss of mobility or structuring of the phase. A technique for introducing geometrically uniform cores of muscle into the probe of the high-resolution spectrometer permits quantitative determinations of liquid water.