Pzi

With ACh

Patch Electrode

ACh sensitive channels

Cell Membrane

Intracellular

Cell Membrane

Intracellular

Time

TJT"

Closed Channel Open Channel

FIGURE 11 Techniques for measuring the conductance change produced by the opening of single ACh-sensitive membrane channels. (A) When the solution in the patch electrode contains no ACh, the membrane channel is closed. (B) With ACh in the pipette the channel opens and closes in a probabilistic fashion. (Modified from Neher E, Sakmann B. Nature 1976; 260:779-802.)

The two types of channels differ, however, in that one is opened by a chemical agent, whereas the other is opened by depolarization.

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