The all-or-none law states that:
a neuron produces an action potential of maximal strength, or none at all
The membrane of a neuron is specialized to:
control the exchange of chemicals between the inside and outside of the cell.
Under which conditions would the sodium-potassium pump be far less effective in creating a concentration gradient?
if the plasma membrane were generally permeable
What is one major cause for the resting potential of a neuron's membrane?
the sodium-potassium pump
The net effect of each cycle of the sodium-potassium pump is to:
decrease the number of positively charged ions within the cell.
What is meant by the term "concentration gradient" with respect to neurons?
Sodium and potassium ions are more concentrated on opposite sides of the membrane.
How does saltatory conduction affect energy use in a neuron?
It reduces the work load for the sodium-potassium pump.
Stimulus A depolarizes a neuron just barely above the threshold. Stimulus B depolarizes a neuron to 10 mV beyond threshold. What can we expect to happen?
Stimulus A and stimulus B will produce the same response in the neurons.
What is the result if a stimulus shifts the potential inside a neuron from the resting potential to a more negative potential?
The neuron will produce an action potential only if the depolarization exceeds what level?
the threshold of excitation
Which of the following is NOT true for sodium ions when the cell is at resting potential?
Sodium tends to be driven out of the neuron by the electrical gradient.
The sodium-potassium pump, repeatedly transports ____ sodium ions out of the cell while drawing ____ potassium ions into it.
Which of the following describes the transmission of information in a local neuron?
The signal decreases in strength as it travels.
According to the all-or-none law:
once an axon reaches threshold, the amplitude and velocity of an action potential are nearly equal each time.
After the peak of an action potential, what prevents sodium ions from continuing to enter the cell?
The sodium gates in the membrane close.
Just after the peak of the action potential, what movement of ions restores the membrane to approximately the resting potential?
Potassium ions leave the cell.
When the potential across a membrane reaches threshold, the sodium channels:
open to let sodium enter the cell rapidly.
Which of the following would produce a hyperpolarization of a neuron?
applying a negative charge inside the neuron with a microelectrode
Which of the following describes selective permeability?
Only certain molecules are allowed to cross the membrane freely.
Concentration gradients lead to what kind of movements?
the movement of ions to areas of their lowest concentrations
Saltatory conduction ____ the velocity of action potentials, and ____ the amount of energy used by the neuron.
The sodium-potassium pump, repeatedly transports three ____ ions out of the cell while drawing two ____ ions into it.
Which of the following is an advantage of having a resting potential?
The cell is prepared to respond quickly to a stimulus
When a neuron's membrane is at rest, which of the following molecules crosses through it MOST slowly?
In what way is a myelinated axon that has lost its myelin (through disease) different from an axon that was never myelinated?
It lacks sodium gates along parts of its surface
The presence of an all-or-none law suggests that neurons can only convey different messages by changing their:
rate or pattern of action potentials.
Which of the following actions would depolarize a neuron?
increasing membrane permeability to sodium
What is the approximate resting potential of the inside of a neuron's membrane, relative to the outside?
How is the speed of an action potential down an unmyelinated axon BEST described?
faster in thick axons than in thin ones
Which two factors will affect the speed of an action potential?
the presence of myelin and the diameter of the axon
Scorpion venom attacks the nervous system by:
opening sodium channels and closing potassium channels
Allowing only certain people to cross the street, and only at certain times. is comparable to a neuron's ____ with respect to ions.
If depolarization is less than the cell's threshold:
sodium crosses the membrane only slightly more than usual.
At what point do the sodium gates start to allow sodium into the neuron?
in response to any depolarization
Which of the following represents the all-or-none law?
The size of the action potential is independent of the strength of the stimulus that initiated it.
When a neuron's membrane is at rest, the concentration gradient tends to move potassium ____ the cell and the electrical gradient tends to move it ____ the cell.
out of, into
What causes potassium ions to leave the axon just after the peak of the action potential?
a continuing concentration gradient and the opening of the potassium gates
Which feature of a neuron limits the number of action potentials it can produce per second?
the absolute refractory period
When the neuronal membrane is at rest, the potassium channels:
permit potassium ions to pass slowly.
The action potential of a neuron depends mostly on what movement of ions?
sodium ions entering the cell
What is the difference in voltage called that typically exists between the inside and the outside of a neuron?
When a membrane is at rest, what attracts sodium ions to the inside of the cell?
both an electrical gradient and a concentration gradient
A drug that decreases the flow of potassium through the potassium gates of the membrane would:
slow the return of the membrane to its resting potential.
When you state that the neuron's membrane is polarized, you are referring to a difference in electrical potential between:
the inside and the outside of the membrane.
A neuron's sodium gates are firmly closed and the membrane cannot produce an action potential during:
the absolute refractory period
Voltage-activated channels are channels for which a change in the voltage across the membrane alters their:
When the neuron is at rest, what is responsible for moving potassium ions into the cell?
both the sodium-potassium pump and electrical gradient
The primary feature of a neuron that prevents the action potential from traveling back from where it just passed is the:
absolute refractory period.
If there is a depolarizing effect on a neuron, the result will be that the neuron will fire:
only if it reaches threshold.
When the neuron is at rest, what is responsible for moving sodium ions out of the cell?
the sodium-potassium pump
When a neuron's membrane is at rest, the concentration gradient tends to move sodium ____ the cell and the electrical gradient tends to move it ____ the cell.
When a membrane is at rest, what attracts potassium ions to the inside of the cell?
an electrical gradient
In the normal course of an action potential:
sodium remains much more concentrated outside than inside the neuron.
Under what conditions is it impossible for a stimulus to produce an action potential?
if the membrane is in its absolute refractory period
If you were to stub your toe and feel the pressure a second or two before you feel the pain, then which of the following statements is most likely true?
Pressure sensitive neurons are large and myelinated.
Electrical gradients lead to what kind of movements?
the movement of ions to areas having the opposite electrical charges
A membrane produces an action potential whenever the potential across it reaches what level?
the threshold of excitation
Which of the following events would increase the concentration gradient of sodium?
increased activity of the sodium potassium pump
During the entire course of events from the start of an action potential until the membrane returns to its resting potential, what is the net movement of ions?
sodium in, potassium out
What happens to the ion gates when the membrane of a neuron starts to be depolarized?
Sodium gates open.
What is the result if a stimulus shifts the potential inside a neuron from the resting potential to a potential slightly closer to zero?
Suppose we applied a drug to a neuron that caused its sodium gates to suddenly open wide. What would happen?
an action potential
The concentration gradient refers to:
the difference in distribution for various ions between the inside and outside of the membrane
When the neuron is at rest, what is responsible for moving potassium ions OUT of the cell?
a concentration gradient