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Name: geysi

Exercise 3: Neurophysiology of Nerve Impulses: Activity 1: The Resting Membrane Potential Lab Report
Pre-lab Quiz Results
You scored 100% by answering 4 out of 4 questions correctly.
1. What is the approximate concentration of K+ inside a typical cell (intracellular concentration)?
You correctly answered: a. 150 mM
2. What is the approximate concentration of K+ outside a cell (extracellular concentration)?
You correctly answered: b. 5 mM
3. What is the approximate concentration of Na+ inside a cell (intracellular concentration)?
You correctly answered: b. 5 mM
4. What is the approximate concentration of Na+ outside a cell (extracellular concentration)?
You correctly answered: a. 150 mM

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Experiment Results
Predict Question:
Predict Question: Predict what will happen to the resting membrane potential if the extracellular K+ concentration is
increased.
Your answer : a. The resting membrane potential will become more negative.
Stop & Think Questions:
What is the polarity of the resting membrane potential (voltage)?
You correctly answered: b. negative
What does it mean that the voltage just inside the membrane is negative?
You correctly answered: b. There are more negative charges than positive charges just inside the membrane.
The membrane of most cells, including neurons, contains passive, open,
K+ leak channels. Given the normal K+ concentrations and the resultant concentration gradient, which direction would K+
be expected to move (diffuse) through these leak channels?
You correctly answered: b. out of the cell
What effect does increasing extracellular K+ have on the net diffusion of K+ out of the cell?
You correctly answered: b. It decreases the net diffusion of K+ .
Which way would Na+ move across the membrane if there were open Na+ channels?
You correctly answered: a. Na+ would diffuse into the cell.
The membrane has open K+ channels, and changing extracellular K+ concentration results in a change in membrane
potential. Changing the extracellular Na+ concentration does not significantly change the membrane potential. What do
your results suggest about the number or state (open or closed) of Na+ channels in the resting membrane of a neuron?
You correctly answered: b. Na+ channels are mostly closed.
Experiment Data:
Extracellular Fluid (ECF)
Control
Control
Control
Control
High K+
High K+
High K+
High K+
Low Na+
Low Na+
Low Na+
Low Na+

Microelectrode Position
Cell body extracellular
Cell body intracellular
Axon extracellular
Axon intracellular
Axon intracellular
Axon extracellular
Cell body extracellular
Cell body intracellular
Cell body intracellular
Cell body extracellular
Axon extracellular
Axon intracellular

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Voltage (mV)
0
-70
0
-70
-40
0
0
-40
-72
0
0
-72

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Post-lab Quiz Results


You scored 100% by answering 3 out of 3 questions correctly.
1. A negative membrane potential was recorded when the tip of the microelectrode was
You correctly answered: d. both inside the cell body and inside the axon.
2. Which of the following caused a change in membrane potential from -70 to -40 in the cell body?
You correctly answered: a. an increase in extracellular K+
3. Which of the following has the most negative voltage?
You correctly answered: c. between the inside of the axon and the outside of the axon with control K+ ECF

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Review Sheet Results


1. Explain why increasing extracellular K+ reduces the net diffusion of K+ out of the neuron through the K+ leak
channels.
You did not answer this question.
2. Explain why increasing extracellular K+ causes the membrane potential to change to a less negative value. How well
did the results compare with your prediction?
You did not answer this question.
3. Explain why a change in extracellular Na+ did not significantly alter the membrane potential in the resting neuron?
You did not answer this question.
4. Discuss the relative permeability of the membrane to Na+ and K+ in a resting neuron.
You did not answer this question.
5. Discuss how a change in Na+ or K+ conductance would affect the resting membrane potential.
You did not answer this question.

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