Sudden local chilling causes action currents to be set up in Nitella and in Chara, an effect which does not follow gradual local chilling. This may be due to a partial solidification of the non-aqueous protoplasmic surfaces which makes them susceptible to rupture by the protoplasmic streaming. This movement continues usually for several minutes after the chilling, whereas if stimulation occurs at all it occurs immediately on chilling. It is found that a chilled spot is much more sensitive to mechanical stimulation than is a spot at room temperature.
Chilling is accompanied by a rise of resistance, a lowered rate of recovery following stimulation, and usually by a falling off in the magnitude of the action curve.