Science: Muscular Electricity

The electrical charge on a single muscle cell has been precisely measured for the first time, announced Dr. Ralph Gerard of the University of Chicago last week. Using needle-fine microelectrodes on 3/1,000-inch cells from frog muscles, he detected charges of 6/100ths of a volt. This surprisingly large potential is lost when the muscle moves. Thus, said Gerard, stimulation of a muscle consists in momentarily short-circuiting its electrical balance.


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