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Propagation of the action potential


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This animation presents the ionic and molecular phenomena involved in the unidirectional propagation of an action potential along an amyelenic axon.

Use the controls at upper right to proceed through the presentation.

Learning goals

  • To understand the ionic phenomena at the origin of the action potential.
  • To understand  the way a membrane’s voltage gated ion canals function
  • To clarify  the notion of an electrochemical gradient
  • To clarify the notions of the kinetics of the opening, deactivation and closing of voltage gated  ion channels
  • To understand why the propagation of an action potential is unidirectional.


Learn more

An action potential is a sudden, temporary inversion of a neuron’s membrane potential, resulting from a preliminary stimulation (of threshold value). The action potential propagates itself through…

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