Download Lecture 2 - Nerve Impulse

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To sketch and identify the most
important micromicro-structures of the
To associate the accessory cells of
the nervous system with a diagram.
To outline the steps of the nerve
impulse generated by an Action
The Neuron
Characteristics of the Neuron
Structural units of the nervous system.
Conducts messages via nerve impulses.
Large and complex
High metabolic rate
Amitotic (don’t divide)
Long lived
Cell Body
The Nervous Impulse
The balance of the electrical charges
on either side of the neuron’s PM
influences the membrane potential MP.
Resting MP is -70 mV.
Changes in the MP act as signals for
receiving, integrating and sending
Occurs due to differences in ion
Movement of ions
Chemical -gated channels
> respond to chemical transmitters.
The ionic environment:
> More Na+ outside than inside.*
Enters via voltagevoltage-gated channels.
> More K+ inside the neuron.
Voltage-gated channels
Voltage> respond to membrane voltage
Nerve Impulses
Action Potential:
Potential: occurs when there is a change in
polarity in the axon’s membrane. “All or none”
- Depolarization - When the inside of the axon first
becomes positive compared to the outside of the cell.
Na+ ions move to the inside of the axon.
- Repolarization - When the inside of the axon
becomes negative again, after AP. K+ ions move to
the outside of cell. Neuron can’t respond to new
Action Potential
Very fast – 1/500th of a second!
Movement along the axon – cascade of charge.
What causes an Action Potential?
I. Sensory
Sensory:: Pressure, light, heat,
chemicals/odor, sound waves.
Does NOT decrease in strength with distance!
All or none principle
II. Neurotransmitters
Neurotransmitters:: chemicals
released from other nearby neurons.
Propogation occurs AWAY from point of origin.
Saltatory conduction in myelinated neurons.
Phenomenon of threshold.
Restoring Resting Potential
Role of Sodium/Potassium pump:
Maintains resting potential.
3 Na+ out for every 2 K+ pumped
Net result is interior of cell is more
negative restoring “energy potential.”