The amounts of the polyamines putrescine, spermine and spermidine as well as the Na,K-ATPase activity have been determined in the developing chick brain. The amounts of spermine and spermidine per gram fresh weight do not change significantly, the amount of putrescine declines until the 17th day of incubation after which an increase takes place. Spermine is able to inhibit the Na,K-ATPase from chick brain competitively. Half maximal inhibition is achieved at 4 X 10^-5 mol/1 spermine. This polyamine functions as an allosteric inhibitor; the Hill coefficient is 2.2 ± 0.3. A regulatory effect of spermine on the Na,K-ATPase from chick brain is discussed. In contrast to spermine 1 mmol/1 spermidine inhibits the Na,K-ATPase only slightly, while 1 mmol/1 putrescine does not inhibit the Na,K-ATPase at all.

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