The Journal of Membrane Biology

, Volume 37, Issue 1, pp 1–12 | Cite as

Variation in selectivity of univalent cations in slime moldPhysarum polycephalum caused by reception of polyvalent cations

  • Kazuyuki Terayama
  • Kenzo Kurihara
  • Yonosuke Kobatake


Specificity of reception on 1∶1 electrolytes in the slime moldPhysarum polycephalum was investigated in the presence of polyvalent cations in media. Membrane potential and motive force of tactic movement were examined with the aid of the double chamber method, and the zeta potential at the membrane surface of the slime mold was measured by electrophoretic mobility. The results obtained are summarized as follows: (1) The presence of polyvalent cations (e.g., Ca2+, Mg2+, Sr2+, Ba2+, La3+, Th4+) in medium led to an increase in threshold concentration,C th , determined from the potential measurements for Na- or Li-salts, and to a decrease inC th for K-, Rb-, or NH4-salts,C th for 1∶1 electrolytes changed discontinuously when the concentration of polyvalent cations in medium exceeded their respective thresholds. (2) TheC th determined from chemotaxis agreed with that from the potential response both in the presence and absence of polyvalent cations. (3) Sequence of selectivity of univalent cations varied extensively in the presence of polyvalent cations. (4) Changes in the zeta potential induced by NaCl reception agreed with those in the membrane potential even in the presence of Ca2+ in medium. (5) TheC th for reception of NaCl changed sharply at about 12 °C in the presence of polyvalent cations, while that for KCl was independent of the temperature.

Conformational changes in surface membrane of the slime mold in response to reception of polyvalent cations were then discussed in relation to the discrimination of univalent cations.


Membrane Potential Human Physiology Conformational Change Zeta Potential Membrane Surface 
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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag New York Inc 1977

Authors and Affiliations

  • Kazuyuki Terayama
    • 1
  • Kenzo Kurihara
    • 1
  • Yonosuke Kobatake
    • 1
  1. 1.Faculty of Pharmaceutical SciencesHokkaido UniversitySapporoJapan

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