Membrane Potential of Squid Axons

  • Shinpei Ohki


The resting membrane potentials of squid axons were meassured as a function of the nature of the ionic species as well as the ionic strength of the extracellular and intracellular media. The observed membrane potentials were analyzed using two equations: a) the Goldman-Hodgkin-Katz equation, and b) the surface/diffusion potential equation. The overall experimental results were found to be explained better by the surface/diffusion potential equation. The surface charge densities of the outer and inner surfaces (on the surface responsible for the ion transfer) of the squid axons were found to be approximately -e/180 Å2 and -e/1300 Å2, respectively. Using the obtained surface charge densitities and the membrane potential equation involving divalent cations, the relative permeabilities (with respect to K+) of divalent cations across the squid axon membrane were obtained to be 0.033 for Ca2+, 0.031 for Sr2+ and 0.022 for Mg2+ from the experimental data.


Membrane Potential Divalent Cation Relative Permeability Surface Charge Density Rest Membrane Potential 
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Copyright information

© Plenum Press, New York 1986

Authors and Affiliations

  • Shinpei Ohki
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Biophysical Sciences School of MedicineState University of New York at BuffaloBuffaloUSA

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