Collective Equilibrium Behaviour of Ion Channel Gating in Cell Membranes: An Ising Model Formulation
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A statistical mechanical model for voltage-gated ion channels in cell membranes is proposed using the transfer matrix method. Equilibrium behavior of the system is studied. Representing the distribution of channels over the cellular membrane on a one-dimensional array with each channel having two states (open and closed) and incorporating channel–channel cooperative interactions, we calculate the fraction of channels in the open state at equilibrium. Experimental data obtained from batrachotoxin-modified sodium channels in the squid giant axon, using the cut-open axon technique, is best fit by the model when there is no interaction between the channels.
KeywordsStatistical mechanics Ising model Transfer matrix method Squid giant axon Voltage-gated ion channels Channel–channel cooperative interactions
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