1. The effect of certain inorganic cations upon the electrical impedance of the sartorius muscle of the frog was investigated. While Na, K, and Mg have little effect upon the resistance of muscle, Ba and Ca cause it to fall. The use of physiologically "unbalanced" salt solution does not in itself seem to affect muscle impedance.
2. The time course of the effect upon muscle impedance of the penetration of substances into the intercellular spaces was studied by treating the muscle with sugar solutions. Half of the effect is over in three-quarters of a minute when the sugar solution is permitted to circulate past both sides of the muscle. This sets an upper limit for the time necessary for inorganic cations and organic narcotics to reach the cell surfaces. The action of inorganic cations and organic narcotics upon muscle is slow compared to the time necessary for them to reach the scene of action.
The penetration of the sugar solutions into the intercellular spaces of muscle was found to follow the well known diffusion law, the amount diffusing in being proportional to the square root of the time.
Average values of 77.7 per cent for ρ, the volume concentration of fibers; 231 ohms specific resistance for r2, the resistance of the interior of the fibers; and 71.0° for θ, the phase angle of the impedance locus, were obtained for the muscle in Ringer's solution. How these values change when the muscle is placed in various concentrations of sugar was also studied.
3. The action of a number of organic narcotics upon muscle was studied. All decrease 1000 cycle resistance if the concentration is sufficiently high. A detailed analysis of the action of the narcotic, iso-amyl carbamate, was made, and it was noted that low concentrations increase resistance while higher concentrations decrease it.
By investigating the effect of narcotics upon muscle impedance over a wide frequency range, it was found that during narcosis the resistance of the fiber membranes first increases and then decreases, and, if the drug is present in sufficiently great concentration, membrane resistance may completely disappear. Membrane capacity is only very slightly affected.