By Howard Rogers and Roy G. Spector (Auth.)
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Although most of the calcium ions concerned in this intracellular calcium cycle is intracellular, some calcium ions enter from the outside during depolarisation. If the extracellular calcium is removed, electrical depolarisation is undiminished but the mechanical response of the muscle disappears because of breaking the coupling link. Conversely, if a frog muscle is repetitively stimulated, first in ordinary Ringer solution and then in a Ringer solution in which the chloride ion is replaced by bromide ion (or nitrate, iodide or thiocyanate ions) the height of the evoked mechanical twitches will be increased in the second solution.
These changes occur at the nodes of Ranvier and the electrical changes in axons are transmitted along the inside of the axon in the internodal regions because of its electrical conducting properties. In other words, the internodal parts of the axon act as a simple electrical cable. This sequence of alterations in ionic permeability occurs in many types of nerve fibre during the passage of an action potential. In mammalian nerve fibres the contribution which the increase in p K makes to the reattainment of resting potential is small, and the fall off in the action potential spike is mainly due to the decrease in p N a .
99 calories per mole per degree), Τ the absolute temperature, and F Faraday's constant (96,500 coulombs per gram equivalent). The equation is in effect a statement that, at equilibrium, the electrical gradient across the membrane is balanced by the concentration gradient. Thus, the intracellular negativity (due partly to negative charges on non diffusible proteins) tends to attract the potassium ions onto the cell, whilst the high intracellular potassium concentration 46 MECHANISMS IN PHARMACOLOGY A N D THERAPEUTICS tends to encourage the flow of these ions outwards through the membrane into the extracellular fluid.