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BBI 2007 Session 6

Paul Grobstein's picture



Playing with Action Potentials

(more on neuronal membranes being/becoming "leaky" and how/why that leads to action potentials)

Peter Brodfuehrer


Simulation Notes

Some other useful links:

Neurons and electrical potentials

AP Animation

Kimball Biology Webpages

Neuroscience for Kids

AP Animation

AP propagation

Synaptic Transmission


Further thoughts, questions, extensions, ideas in forum below ...


Tammi Jordan's picture

Thurs. morning conversation

The comment was made that the younger the student the less resistant, on the other hand I have also found that the older the student the more motivated they are.
Bruce Williamson's picture


Now it is clear that the input must have a certain intensity AND a certain duration in order that an action potential is formed. So the fleeting input may miss out on causing the neuron to "fire". And the light touch (like the mosquito landing) might also fail to register. So too, perhaps the fleeting thought fails to become memory. To make a memory does the thought need to be held long enough? Repeated and mulled over strongly enough? Regards,
Cheryl Brown's picture

Action Potentials

This afternoon we built on some of the terms and ideas presented by Pual this morning. It was fun playing with the AP Simulator and seeing the correlation between stimulus strength and the duration and number of action potentials. We also learned about ion channels in membranes and how they are gated or non-gated.
Geneva Tolliferreo's picture

The Treshold of Pain

Interesting. Very Interesting. PB's presentation, brief and simplistic, allowed for further understanding of the reflex test doctor's conduct during their examination of their patients, namely The Patella Tendon Test. He confirmed for me that our ability to compromise the test by controlling the outcome of the hammer making contact with the tendon below the knee is possible. How does compromising the test change the doctor's findings and treatment/recommendation?
Diane OFee-Powers's picture

Playing With Action Potentials

I enjoyed the continuing story of neurons, leaky memebranes, action potentials etc. I am looking forward to continuing the story as it applies to our classroom!
Donna Morris's picture


Until today I had never heard about leaky membranes ,so this was a interesting session on how they cause signals to be transmitted through the nervous system.
Benjamin Zerante's picture

Leaky Membranes Response

This afternoon was helpful to continue and advance our thinking about leaky membranes. I have never heard the term "leaky" membranes before today (although the concept is similar to membrane permeability), so this afternoon was helpful in order to provide examples of how a membrane becomes leaky and how that relates to signals being transmitted through the nervous system. Ion channels/pathways are very interesting, and I'm still wrapping my head around imagining the complexity and scope of such a complicated system of information transfer.
Teresa Albers's picture

neuron thresholds

Duration and strength can continue to generate action potentials. In the classroom, with behavior problems and understanding how to deal with them. it is always imperative to understand how the teacher, acting as stimulus, propogates certain behaviors. It is challenging to draw oneself out of the process that promotes or instigates children's reactions.

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