Letter | Published:

Simultaneous Determination of Membrane Potential and Intracellular Ion Concentrations in Single Nerve Axons

Nature volume 212, pages 521522 (29 October 1966) | Download Citation



ONE major obstacle to the understanding of the function of the nerve membrane has been the difficulty of obtaining reliable figures for intracellular ion concentrations. As a rule, only one ion concentration at a time has been determined and then only as an average from a whole nerve bundle. The best results have been obtained with the large squid axons, but even for these the intracellular concentration of chloride was not well known until a few years ago1. A method is described here which permits the simultaneous determination of membrane potential and intracellular concentrations of sodium, potassium and chloride in single axons. The technique also enables several samples to be taken from the same axon, which allows comparisons of the intracellular content at different times.

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  1. Institute of Physiology and Medical Biophysics, University of Uppsala, Sweden.



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