At last, it’s time to consider the action potential! Please prepare for our class discussion this Friday by reading at least one of the following:

  • Two sections of Essential Cell Biology (if you still have your MCB textbook) in chapter 12 pertaining to ion channels and neurons:
    • Ion Channels and the Membrane Potential
    • Ion Channels and Signaling in Nerve Cells
  • The Wikipedia article on the action potential
  • EO Wilson’s Life on Earth section 15.3 in Unit 4

As I suggested at the end of class today, as you read, keep track of the different ions or ion channels involved, in particular what they do and when.

Also, familiarize yourself with the following terms: depolarization, repolarization, hyperpolarization, inactivation (with respect to ion channels), refractory period.

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