Ba++ ion blocks K+ conductance at concentrations in the nanomolar range. This blockage is time and voltage dependent. From the time dependence it is possible to determine the forward and reverse rate constants for what appears to be an essentially first-order process of Ba++ interaction. The voltage dependence of the rate constants and the dissociation constants place the site of interaction near the middle of the membrane field. Comparison of the efficacy of Ba++ block at various internal K+ concentrations suggests that Ba++ is probably a simple competitive inhibitor of K+ interaction with the K+ conductance. The character of Ba++ block in high external K+ solutions suggests that Ba++ ion may be "knocked-off" the site by inward movement of external K+. Examination of the effects of other divalent cations suggests that the channel may have a closed state with a divalent cation inside the channel. The relative blockage at different temperatures implies a strong interaction between Ba++ and the K+ conductance.

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