electric motor control
Life and Medical Sciences
Cell & Developmental Biology
Wiley InterScience Backfile Collection 1832-2000
We have studied the motor responses to membrane hyperpolarization of the marginal cirri in Stylonychia using voltage-clamp, high-speed cinematography, and computer-processing techniques. The cirri started beating when voltage step amplitudes rose beyond 5 mV. The power stroke was oriented toward the posterior cell and (hyperpolarizing motor activation). The frequency rose slightly during a voltage step, and decreased with similar rates for 100 ms following the step end. Amplitude and duration of the step tended to increase the motor response of the cirri. The late response declined exponentially. The time constant of the decay rose with the step amplitude. Among three response parameters tested (frequency, duration, number of cycles), the number of evoked ciliary cycles was best correlated with the amplitude of the hyperpolarization. Comparisons with the responses to depolarizing voltage steps reveal similarities in the relaxation of ciliary activity which appears to be uncoupled, in part, from the electric membrane events during the voltage stimulus.
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