The membrane of the squid axon is considered on the basis of a pore model in which the distribution of the pore sizes strongly favors K+ transfer when there is no potential. Electrical asymmetry causes non-penetrating ions on the membrane capacitor to exert a mechanical force on both membrane surfaces and this force results in a deformation of the membrane pore system such that it assumes a distribution of sizes favoring the ions exerting mechanical force. The ions involved appear to be Ca++ on the outside of the membrane and isethionate-, (i-) on the inside; as Ca++ is equivalent in size to Na+, the charged membrane is potentially able to transfer Na+, when the ions deforming the membrane pore distribution are removed. A depolarization of the membrane leads to an opening of pores that will allow Na+ penetration and a release of the membrane from deformation. The pores revert to the zero-potential pore size distribution hence the Na permeability change is a transient. Calculation shows that the potassium conductance vs. displacement of membrane potential curve for the squid axon and the "inactivation" function, h, can be obtained directly from the assumed membrane distortion without the introduction of arbitrary parameters. The sodium conductance, because it is a transient, requires assumptions about the time constants with which ions unblock pores at the outside and the inside of the membrane.

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