If the ionic charges inside and outside of a cell are perfectly compensated (balanced), the membrane potential is 0 mV. It turns out that very few uncompensated charges are needed to generate a significant membrane potential. For this problem, calculate the percentage of the ions inside a cell (100*uncompensated ion concentration/total ion concentration) that must be uncompensated by ions outside of the cell to create a membrane potential of 100 mV. Assume that the cell is spherical with a radius of 10 µm and that the ionic concentration inside and outside the cell is 0.3 M. Hint: Membrane capacitance is 1 µF/cm2. This means that 10-6 C of charge are needed per 1 cm2 of membrane to produce a 1 V potential across the membrane. Also recall that one mole of monovalent charges = 96,500

 
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