Electrical Signals in Neurons: Ion Channels (Nursing)

by Jasmine Clark, PhD

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    00:01 So now that we've gone through many of the structures found in the nervous system, let's start talking about some of the functions.

    00:08 Let's take a look at how we're going to generate nerve impulses.

    00:13 In order for a nerve impulse to occur, excitable cells must communicate with each other via action potentials or graded potentials.

    00:25 Action potentials are going to allow for communication over both short and long distances while graded potentials are going to only allow communication over short distances.

    00:38 The production of both action potentials or graded potentials are going to depend upon the existence of a resting membrane potential as well as the existence of certain ion channels. Let's take a look at those channels.

    00:56 There are four different types of channels that are found in the plasma membrane of neurons.

    01:03 These channels are going to play a role in an action potential, a graded potential, as well as establishing a resting membrane potential.

    01:14 These channels include leakage channels, ligand-gated channels, mechanically gated channels, and finally, voltage-gated channels.

    01:29 The first of these channels is going to be the leakage channels.

    01:35 Leakage channels such as potassium leakage channels found in the plasma membrane of neurons are going to cause certain ions to leak from or into the cell.

    01:48 These are going to randomly open at different times.

    01:52 The second type of channel is going to be ligand-gated channels.

    01:57 Ligand-gated channels are going to respond to a chemical stimulus such as a ligand binding to its receptor.

    02:06 An example of ligand-gated channels are the acetylcholine binding to channels which are gonna be necessary for nerve impulse to happen.

    02:16 A third type of channel is the mechanically gated channels.

    02:21 These are going to respond to a physical stimulus so something physically moving them such as vibration or pressure.

    02:30 In our ears, we have these mechanically gated channels which actually respond to the vibrations from sound waves.

    02:39 And finally, we have the voltage-gated channels.

    02:43 We've seen these before in the muscular system.

    02:47 These are going to respond to a change in the voltage across the membrane of the neuron.

    About the Lecture

    The lecture Electrical Signals in Neurons: Ion Channels (Nursing) by Jasmine Clark, PhD is from the course Nervous System – Physiology (Nursing).

    Included Quiz Questions

    1. Voltage-gated channels
    2. Leakage channels
    3. Ligand-gated channels
    4. Mechanically gated channels

    Author of lecture Electrical Signals in Neurons: Ion Channels (Nursing)

     Jasmine Clark, PhD

    Jasmine Clark, PhD

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