The Space Clamp Experiment of Hodgkin and Huxley — Non-Propagating Action Potentials

  • Frank Rattay


The cell membrane has pores which open up during excitation — this theory was postulated by Julius Bernstein in 1902, but a quantitative description of the phenomena involved was found fifty years later by the ingenious experiments of Hodgkin and huxley on giant squid axons. Hodgkin and Huxley assumed that a gating mechanism is responsible for the ionic transport across the membrane. Sodium and potassium ions are responsible for exciting the axons. They seemed to be independent from each other, but both can be described in a statistical manner. In order to quantify the voltage-dependent conductance of the membrane new electronic techniques were used.


Ionic Current Sodium Current Open Gate Voltage Clamp Experiment Sodium Conductance 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Wien 1990

Authors and Affiliations

  • Frank Rattay
    • 1
  1. 1.Technical UniversityViennaAustria

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