Neural Control of Exercising Muscle

All functions within the human body are, or can be, influenced by the nervous system. Nerves provide the wiring through which electrical impulses are sent to and received from virtually all parts of the body. The brain acts as a central computer, integrating incoming information, selecting an appropriate response, and then signaling the involved organs and tissues to take appropriate action. Thus, the nervous system forms a vital network, allowing communication, coordination, and interaction among the various tissues and systems in the body and between the body and the external environment.

Neurons are referred to as excitable tissue because they can respond to various types of stimuli and convert those messages to a nerve impulse. A nerve impulse— an electrical signal—arises when a stimulus is strong enough to substantially change the normal electrical charge of the neuron. That signal then moves along the neuron down the axon and toward an end organ, such as another neuron or a group of muscle fibers.

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The cell membrane of a typical neuron at rest has a negative electrical potential of about –70 mV. This means that if one were to insert a voltmeter probe inside the cell, the electrical charges found there and the charges found outside the cell would differ by 70 mV, and the inside would be negative relative to the outside. This electrical potential difference is known as the resting membrane potential (RMP). Read More About: foumovie

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If the inside of the cell becomes less negative relative to the outside, the potential difference across the membrane decreases. The membrane will be less polarized. When this happens, the membrane is said to be depolarized. Thus, depolarization occurs any time the charge difference becomes more positive than the RMP of –70 mV, moving closer to zero. This typically results from a change in the membrane’s Na+ permeability

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