On the "surface law" and basal metabolic rate

B. F. Gray*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Citations (Scopus)


It is shown on a theoretical basis that the existence of a "power law" relationship between body mass M and total metabolic heat generation rate Q of the form Q = kMα does not uniquely determine the dependence of metabolic rate on body temperature. However, it is shown that a particular assumption for this temperature dependence, successful in other problems, does predict a "power law" similar to the empirical one. At the same time it also accounts satisfactorily for the linear dependence of metabolic rate on ambient temperature.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)757-767
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Theoretical Biology
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 21 Dec 1981


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