Welcome to Biologyquestions.org Please ask any biology related questions and receive answers from other members of the community.

1,293 questions

1,116 answers


58,456 users

What does concentration gradient mean?

the meaning of concentration gradient
asked Mar 8, 2012 by anonymous

Your answer

Note: Please post new questions on the ask a question page. Thank you.

Your name to display (optional):
Privacy: Your email address will only be used for sending these notifications.
Anti-spam verification:

To avoid this verification in future, please log in or register.

1 Answer

Concentration gradients describe where the high and low concentrations of particles are. In the example below, simple diffusion moves particles from the left to the right and from high concentration to low concentration until there is balance and the particles are equal everywhere. The particles are said to move in the direction of the concentration gradient from high to low.

In biology, concentration gradients often describe 2 sides of a membrane. There could for example be a high concentration of sodium on the outside of a membrane and low concentration on the inside. Particles tend to want to move toward what is called equilibrium meaning equal concentration on both sides.

In some situations, particles can be moved against their concentration gradient. This requires energy and is known as active transport.


Diffusion is the movement of particles from high concentration to low concentration with the concentration gradient.


answered Mar 8, 2012 by mshelton Level 3 User (8,500 points)

Related questions

1 answer 28 views
28 views asked Apr 15, 2013 by anonymous
1 answer 70 views
70 views asked Jun 15, 2012 by anonymous
1 answer 60 views
60 views asked Jun 13, 2012 by anonymous
2 answers 36 views
36 views asked May 29, 2012 by anonymous
1 answer 210 views
210 views asked Mar 21, 2012 by anonymous