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25

There is a very different mechanism for generation (and detection) of ultraviolet, visible and infrared light vs radio waves. For the first, it is possible to generate it using chemical reactions (that is, chemiluminescence, bioluminescence) with a typical energy of order of 2 eV (electronovolts). Also, it is easy to detect with similar means - coupling to ...


10

There are two factors that need to be taken into account here: 1. Myelination decreases membrance capacitance. The rate at which sodium influx through a node can depolarize the axon at the next node is related to both the current and capacitance across the membrane (in addition to a few other factors). So while adding a new node to the axon would indeed ...


8

Fast-Fourier Transform (FFT) transforms a signal from the time domain into the frequency domain. Basically, any time-dependent signal can be broken down in a collection of sinusoids. In this way, lengthy and noisy EEG recordings can be conveniently plotted in a frequency power-spectrum. By doing so, hidden features can become apparent. By adding all the ...


7

The carriers of the charge are ions and they get repelled from each other well enough. Other than their charge there is only the size in which they differ (for all practical purposes). This means, as long as we are talking about membrane potential, the actors are just a mix of 1+ ions which don't come near each other. When size matters, for example in an ion ...


6

The pacemaker potential is interesting (to a biologist) as it involves your typical Na/K channels, Ca channel, as well as a funny current (If) or alternatively called hyperpolarization-activated current. The funny current is a mixed sodium-potassium current that activates upon hyperpolarization at voltages in the diastolic range (normally from ...


5

While Luke's answer is perfectly correct, the answer can be given in a more intuitive manner. First, the main point is that it is increased positive voltage (inside the axon) that opens the sodium ion channels to propagate the action potential. The question is: how fast can this voltage get to the sodium channels? In an unmyelinated axon, the movement of ...


5

Because the intermediate stages are not evolutionarily favoured. That's why. Sound and light perception are useful without any generative capability. An organism with a tiny amount of perception for either of these things has an advantage over those without; and an organism with a tiny amount more has an advantage over those with a tiny bit less. This ...


5

This phenomenon is called depolarization block and it occurs in real membranes in current-clamp experiments. The key mechanism is that the membrane has not been allowed to repolarize sufficiently to relieve the inactivation of sodium channels. The Hodgkin-Huxley model reflects this in the "inverted" voltage-dependence of the h gate (sodium inactivation ...


5

I don't want to comment about the nature of electric signals in neurons (as I know only little about physiology and neurophysiology). But here is a short answer that may already help you. Neuronal electric signals are called action potential. If you register the voltage at a given location on the axon of a neuron through time you will see something like ...


5

I was able to do some reading and research and I found some interesting information that was a). news to me. And b). the answer is yes... And no. A spasm can be the cause of a heart attack by causing the coronary artery to contract. When that artery contracts, it causes a dramatic decrease in blood flow to the heart. When the heart looses access to ...


5

Representative ion concentrations are shown in Fig. 1: The membrane is mainly permeable to K+. Because the Na+,K+-ATPase pumps K+ inside of the cell, it tends to diffuse outward again, thereby taking positive charge outside the cell and making it negative inside (extracellular space is pretty much devoid of charge due to its vastness). Because the ...


5

Short answer Any electrophysiological recording of potentials, including the electrocardiogram (ECG or EKG), measures a potential difference. Hence, two or more electrodes are necessary. Background The ECG measures the rhythmic voltages changes generated by the heart muscle. Voltage is defined as a potential difference between two points. Therefore, a ...


5

Many EEG responses are swamped in random brain activity, artifacts and background noise. A single movement typically doesn't evoke measurable activity, because its amplitude is so small with respect to background noise. I think the potentials you are looking for are event-related potentials or ERPs (Fig. 1). During ERP recording, basically a regular EEG is ...


5

Actually, it would be better to say that action potential does not travel but is regenerated anew in a sequence along the axon. I would like to elaborate how this happens and why this is the reason why the action potential stays constant: In rest state, there is an ion gradient across the membrane of each cell. This causes a small voltage between the ...


4

(I probably ought to have a pat answer to this on the tip of my mind, but since I don't I'm going to wing it. This is probably just an opportunity to make an utter fool of myself. Please treat everything that follows with extreme suspicion.) I think this is effectively an artefact of the model. That may not be true in the strictest sense -- it is possible ...


4

Let's start with the basics. The inside of the cell contains predominantly positive potassium ions, and negative phosphate ions, and other negative ions (e.g. from amino acids). The outside of the cell contains predominantly positive sodium ions, and negative chloride ions. The cell however sets up a resting membrane potential, due to the cell's ...


4

Electroencephalography has a good time resolution (milliseconds) but poor spatial resolution (several centimers). The usual estimated figure is that at least 50000 neurons need to fire simultaneously so that the activity can picked up by EEG. The answer provided by @Jeremy Kemball is not very accurate. The reason why the spatial resolution of EEG is poor is ...


4

Good question. Just to set some stuff straight: In contrast to a comment placed earlier, there is definitely a current flow between electrodes in neural tissue, as long as the impedance is not too high. The potential difference between the electrodes and impedance determines how much current flows, basically following Ohm's law: I = U/R. As to your ...


4

MD Broadly this could be attempted with Molecular Dynamics simulations. As you discovered in your search, one of the most popular softwares is free: GROMACS. This is an atomistic approach to the problem. It also has many electrostatic parameters. I would point out that generally MD requires careful and robust methods and often an expert lending hand if the ...


4

The Na,K-ATPase restores negative membrane potentials. When a cell is hyperpolarized, leaky K+ channels take care of that. Leaky K+ channels are always open. Generally, K+ has the tendency to diffuse back out of the cell along its chemical gradient through leaky K+ channels, after been pumped in, making the cell's inside more negative. However, in the ...


4

Any periodic waveform can be produced by adding up a series of sin waves of the appropriate frequency and amplitude. The FFT looks at a complex waveform and calculates those frequencies and amplitudes. The result is a new curve which plots amplitude vs frequency. Thus, it transforms the signal from the time domain into the frequency domain. I don't have ...


3

The neuronal cell membrane is quite permeable to K+. Because the Na+,K+-ATPase pumps K+ inside of the cell, K+ tends to diffuse outward again, thereby taking positive charge outside the cell and making it negative inside (see Further Reading 1). This outward flow of K+ stops at a certain point, because the driving force of K+ diffusion out of the cell along ...


3

Essentially all animal cells maintain an ionic balance causing a resting potential of about -70 mV in order to maintain their internal environment including pH, ion concentrations, osmotic pressure and volume. (Lodish, Molecular Cell Biology) Neurons developed from existing types of cells and it's unlikely that the cost of maintaining resting potential in ...


3

These statements are not true, simply speaking. Currents as little as few microampers can kill a person if, for example, applied directly next to the heart. A few seconds of 220V can kill a person even if the current is in miliamper range (Biksom, cited below, mentions 4s at 120mA). However, it is true that it is not the voltage alone that kills, that there ...


3

I am not sure that kind of action would be a "significant influence", but the general understanding is that LFP and spike frequency are inter-correlated (1, 2). An interesting recent publication on the topic (3), however, doubts this correlation as the nature of LFP recording and signal processing might introduce some artifacts to the recordings. It would ...


3

Actually, electromagnetic communication is used by certain fish, the mormyrids and the gymnotids. Pulse modulated in the former and amplitude modulated in the latter. However, the frequencies used are not much greater than 1Khz, which is not what we ordinarily consider to be in the radio frequency spectrum. There is, too, another biological species in ...


3

High sodium extracellularly means an increased sodium concentration gradient across the membrane. This means there is a larger driving force for sodium to enter the cell once the sodium channels open at the start of the action potential, and hence a larger depolarization takes place increasing the action potential amplitude. The enhanced depolarization leads ...


3

A microelectrode is quite literally a small electrode and they come in a variety of shapes. The glass pipette electrode you are specifically referring to is mostly used for patch clamp experiments. Patch clamp experiments are performed using various configurations: Source: Leica So basically there is the cell-attached configuration, where a patch of ...


3

First bump is called P point, middle is QRS wave (as in Q-down, R-up, S-down), and last bump is T. Every feature is representation of electrical activity in certain region of heart. E.g. P bump is contraction of atrium. See more here. Bumps are P/QRS/T. The reason why you see so many different recordings is that it was taken with many-lead ECG. Heart has ...


3

In Wolff-Parkinson-White syndrome, the normal Q wave is usually masked by the preexcitation action potential which produces the delta wave. Despite this, missing Q wave is not a diagnosis criteria of the syndrome, and up to 70 percent of the patients show a negative delta wave which causes differential diagnosis problems because it is confused with Q, ...



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