Bioelectricity pp 153-178 | Cite as

Impulse Propagation

  • Robert Plonsey
  • Roger C. Barr


If a cell of approximately spherical shape is placed in a stimulating electric field, the induced transmembrane potential will be the same over the entire membrane. If this potential is transthreshold, the entire cell will be excited synchronously and a membrane action potential results. On the other hand, for a long thin fiber the initial depolarized region, using a pair of closely spaced electrodes, has a limited extent; in this case, propagation from the active to adjoining inactive regions will take place. Since the topic of this chapter is propagation we will consider the latter configuration.


Myelin Sheath Transmembrane Potential Myelinated Fiber Stimulate Electric Field Electrical Representation 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2000

Authors and Affiliations

  • Robert Plonsey
    • 1
  • Roger C. Barr
    • 1
  1. 1.Edmund T. Pratt Jr., School of EngineeringDuke UniversityDurhamUSA

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