Optimal sizes of ion channel clusters
Department of Physics and Astronomy, Ohio University - Athens,
OH 45701, USA
Accepted: 9 July 2001
Voltage-dependent conductance of ion channels is key for the generation of action potentials. Ion channels are opening and closing stochastically due to thermal noise and introduce internal noise into the membrane potential of the cell. The noise power depends on the size of the ion channel cluster that generates the action potential (the hillock). We show that the encoding of small sinusoidal signals in terms of spikes can be enhanced by channel noise if the cluster size is in a certain range.
PACS: 05.40.-a – Fluctuation phenomena, random processes, noise, and Brownian motion
© EDP Sciences, 2001