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Effect of self-gating on action potential firing at neuromuscular junction.

MM Rahman, M Mahmud, S Vassanelli

NeuroChip Laboratory of Department of Human Anatomy & Physiology, University of Padova, 35131 Padova, Italy. rahman@dei.unipd.it

Conference proceedings : ... Annual International Conference of the IEEE Engineering in Medicine and Biology Society. IEEE Engineering in Medicine and Biology Society. Conference 2011:4082-5 (2011)

Abstract - The neuromuscular junction (NMJ) is the place where the axon terminal of motoneuron connects the 'endplate' of a muscle fiber. During this transduction a large depolarization (endplate potential) caused by the nerve impulse opens a large number of voltage-sensitive sodium channels at the post-junctional terminal. As a result, action potentials are generated and propagated along the muscle fiber causing contraction. This work shows simulated results of the voltage-dependent sodium channels' firing behavior at the NMJ using a mathematical model. It is found that the firing behavior of the sodium channels change basing on their activation and inactivation kinetics which are highly influenced by the self-gating behavior of the sodium conductances. The simulation results showed that self-gating of sodium channels increase conduction efficiency at the NMJ and decrease threshold for firing.

PMID: 22255237 [PubMed]