Definition of Bohr effect in US English:

Bohr effect


  • A decrease in the amount of oxygen associated with hemoglobin and other respiratory compounds in response to a lowered blood pH resulting from an increased concentration of carbon dioxide in the blood.

    • ‘As you might imagine, the Bohr effect was first discovered by a guy named Bohr!’
    • ‘This leads to a release of O2 to the peripheral tissues, a phenomenon termed the Bohr effect.’
    • ‘This was thought to be caused by the immediate nature of the Bohr effect.’
    • ‘The Bohr Effect aids in this function by releasing oxygen to the tissues when the concentration of hydrogen ions becomes large.’
    • ‘The Bohr effect cannot explain the excess demand for oxygen by muscle during heavy exercise.’


Named for Danish physiologist Christian Bohr (1855–1911).