Resting Potential

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resting potential

[′rest·iŋ pə‚ten·chəl]
The potential difference between the interior cytoplasm and the external aqueous medium of the living cell.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Scientific & Technical Terms, 6E, Copyright © 2003 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.
The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Potential, Resting


a potential difference between the contents of a cell or fiber and the extracellular fluid; the difference in potential is localized on the surface membrane. The membrane’s inner surface is charged electronegatively with respect to the outer surface.

Resting potential results from unequal concentrations of Na+, K+, and Cl- ions on both sides of the cell membrane and from the membrane’s unequal permeability to these ions. In nerve and muscle cells, resting potential helps keep the membrane’s molecular structure ready for excitation in response to stimulation. All influences on a cell causing a prolonged and stable decrease in action potential result in decreased cell excitability or in total loss of the cell’s capacity to generate action potential. Such influences include metabolic disturbance, increase in extracellular content of K+ ions, and the effect of a strong electric current.


The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
References in periodicals archive ?
Gettes, "The effects of antiarrhythmic drugs, stimulation frequency, and potassium-induced resting membrane potential changes on conduction velocity and dV/dtmax in guinea pig myocardium," Circulation Research, vol.
[[[K.sup.+]].sub.o] RMP APD [down arrow] [down arrow] [up arrow] [28, 60] CN -- + NG - ++ Mt - ++ KT * - ++ GB - ++ CZ -- -, * [[[K.sup.+]].sub.o] ERP [AP.sub.ud] [down arrow] [down arrow] [up arrow] [59, 60] [30,59] CN -- ++ NG ++, * -, * Mt ++, * -, * KT * ++, * -, * GB ++, * -, * CZ -- ++ RMP: resting membrane potential; APD: AP duration; ERP: effective refractory period; APud: upstroke delay, inversely correlated with conduction velocity; black arrows: expected increase/decrease during HD, with the corresponding references, +/++/?/??: moderate/large biomarker increase/decrease; *: biomarker changes different from the expected ones.
Hodgkin and his colleagues found that the resting membrane potential results from the fact that [g.sub.K] [is greater than] [g.sub.Na] [is greater than] [g.sub.Cl].
This formula provides a measure of the degree to which neural tissue has increased from its resting membrane potential to become more susceptible to firing action potentials.
This process is slow, and by the end of the simulation (Figure 11(e)), resting membrane potential is still elevated in the motor cortex.
The resting membrane potential was -- 48 [plus or minus] 12 mV (mean [plus or minus] SD, n = 52), and 52% (n = 115) of the recorded neurons showed spontaneous activity consisting of low-frequency (0.1-0.3 Hz) regular discharges of action potentials (Fig.