Cells of multicellular organisms such as animals and plants, as well as those of unicellular organisms such as yeast exhibit a potential difference across the cell plasma membrane. That is to say that there is an electrical potential difference between the inside of the cell and the surrounding bathing medium of the cell. This potential difference is referred to as the membrane potential (Vm). The numerical value of the membrane potential is generally negative, meaning that the inside of the cell is negative with respect to the outside solution, which is taken as the reference or zero value.
Test your knowledge of the membrane potential by taking this series of quizzes. For more information about the membrane potential, see the Resting Membrane Potential lecture notes.
(1) A typical neuron has a resting membrane potential of about:
(2) Which of the following is (are) directly responsible for the generation of the resting membrane potential?
(3) The Na+/K+ ATPase is directly responsible for the establishment of the membrane potential.
(4) By maintaining the Na+ and K+ concentration gradients, the Na+/K+ ATPase is responsible for maintaining the membrane potential.
(5) The following ion(s) is(are) the major contributor(s) to establishing the value of the resting membrane potential in most cells.
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Posted: Monday, August 11, 2014 Last updated: Monday, August 11, 2014