The hypothesis that the nexus is a specialized structure allowing current flow between cell interiors is corroborated by concomitant structural changes of the nexus and changes of electrical coupling between cells due to soaking in solutions of abnormal tonicity. Fusiform frog atrial fibers are interconnected by nexuses. The nexuses, desmosomes, and regions of myofibrillar attachment of this muscle are not associated in a manner similar to intercalated discs of guinea pig cardiac muscle. Indeed, nexuses occur wherever cell membranes are closely apposed. Action potentials of frog atrial bundles detected extracellularly across a sucrose gap change from monophasic to diphasic when the gap is shunted by a resistor. This indicates that action potentials are transmitted across the gap when sufficient excitatory current is allowed to flow across the gap. When the sucrose solution in the gap is made hypertonic, propagation past the gap is blocked and the resistance between the cells in the gap increases. Electron micrographs demonstrate that the nexuses of frog atrium and guinea pig ventricle are ruptured by hypertonic solutions.

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