Action Potential

Action Potential
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  • Seriously?! You need to study that because that's a major part. Let's go to the library and study!
  • I am so not ready for this test on Friday. The action potential is the biggest part and I know nothing about it. 
  • So the first step is the resting state. Do you know anything about that? 
  • It's probably the only thing I know. All the gated sodium and potassium channels are close and the leakage channels are always open 
  • Okay, that's a good start. And don't forget that the charge is -70 mV and that potassium is inside the cell and sodium is outside. Do you know what happens next?
  • Nope. After that I'm totally confused. 
  • I just said that's the only thing I know... 
  • The next step is depolarization. Sodium channels activates and open and rush inside the cell 
  • Yep! See you're slowly getting it. 
  • Oh yeah. Then it makes the inside more positive 
  • Then it's repolarization. Sodium channels are inactivating and potassium channels open and they rush outside the cell causing the action potential spike to stop. 
  • Let me write this down 
  • Then it's hyperpolarization when some potassium channels stay open and do you know what happens to the membrane polarity?
  • Correct. This allows excess potassium to efflux. You knew more than you thought you did. 
  • The inside becomes more negative until the membrane polarity passes -70 mV.
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