Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania

Emeritus Professor of Physiology

Department of Physiology
B701 Richards Building
3700 Hamilton Walk
Philadelphia, PA 19104-6085

Phone: (215) 898-7816
Fax: (215) 573-5851

Other Perelman School of Medicine Affiliations
Neurosciences Graduate Group

B.A., Rice University, 1956
M.D., Washington University, 1960

Laskar Award, Basic Science, 1999
John Scott Award, 2000
Gairdner Foundation International Award, 2001
Member, National Academy of Sciences
Jacob Javits Neuroscience Research Award of NIH

Professional Affiliations
American Physiological Society
Biophysical Society
Society of General Physiologists
Editorial Board, Journal of General Physiology
Editorial Board, Journal of Neurophysiology

Research Description
Transmembrane ionic channels and membrane potentials are properties common to all cells. My laboratory works on permeability mechanisms of ionic channels, the gating processes that open and close the channels, and the role of channels and membrane potentials in cell function.

Sodium and potassiun channels in excitable membranes are activated by changes of the membrane voltage. The laboratory is examining the gating of these channels in the membranes of one of the classical excitable cells, the squid giant axon. In this preparation, the investigator can control the solution bathing the internal and external surfaces of the membrane, and very rapid changes of the membrane potential can be imposed, allowing excellent time resolution of the gating processes. Gating current, an important indicator of gating activity, can best be measured from squid giant axons.

Excitability is a property of many cells, including endocrine cells. Cells derived from the pituitary have action potentials and pacemaking activity, and a full complement of ionic channels, including sodium channels, 2 or more types of potassium channels, and at least 2 types of calcium channels. My research is examining these cells using the patch clamp technique, and is attempting to extend studies of this type to neurons from the central nervous system (CNS) to achieve a better understanding of the cellular electrophysiology of these complex cells.


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(searches the National Library of Medicine's PubMed database.)

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