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In an animal cell, especially neuron and in particular its axon, while there is electrical resistance and capacitance mechanism in the cell, which play essential roles in the cable theory model of neuronal action potential transmission, is there prominent self inductance mechanism in the sense of electromagnetism?

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i don't think there are any magnetic effects in a typical animal body. I can't think of any inductive effects. – WYSIWYG Jul 17 '14 at 8:19
@WYSIWYG: Magnetism is a by product of electricity. Is it not strange that animal does not or produce magnetic field while use electricity extensively? I can think of one instance of magnetic field use in animal, their perception of orientation based on the earth magnetic field. See this NOVA article – Hans Jul 17 '14 at 23:45
Well moving charge does produce magnetic field but if you do the calculations you would need quite some current to generate a significant magnetic field. Yes animals can sense magnetic field but it is limited to some. Nonetheless, I still cannot think of any inductive effects in the cell (where is a coil?) – WYSIWYG Jul 18 '14 at 4:19
@WYSIWYG: I am not quite sure how you define "significant" magnetic field. Two parallel lines of current exerts forces on each other in close proximity. Circuit has to be designed carefully to eliminate the unintended inductive effect. Coils are to make the geometry better generate the inductance, but they are not necessary, since other shapes can generate inductance as well. Of course I do not know what structure in a cell would be able to generate sufficient inductance, hence the question. – Hans Jul 18 '14 at 15:00

What one thinks, no matter how intuitive it may appear is not particularly relevant in science. The inductance associated with a neural axon has been well documented since Cole (1966). Its role in the propagation of neural signals is developed extensively in . The actual development begins earlier in Section 7.4 on page 322 of that document.
Failure to consider the inductance associated with any alternating electrical signal passed along a coaxial cable leads to disaster. The first undersea cable based on the ideas of William Thompson,Lord Kelvin, and described as an RC cable by Hermann (page 322 in the above document) was a technical and financial disaster. Two years later, a more sophisticated RLC cable based on Maxwell's Equations for a coaxial structure was laid with great success. No RC cable has ever been used in practice since that time. For unknown reasons, the biological community keeps trying to ignore the inductance of the coaxial myelinated axon (leading to ridiculous modeling data). This appears to be the result of introductory courses in electricity for non-engineers trying to avoid the necessary mathematics to understand electromagnetic signal propagation through space and along various types of cables and waveguides.

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So you are saying there is indeed inductance in myelinated axon. So should the correct equation for action potential be the telegrapher's equation rather than the cable equation Is this the main difference between the myelinated and unmyelinated axon other than the insulation provided by the myelin? – Hans Aug 6 '14 at 21:02

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