TRANSVERSE ELECTRIC IMPEDANCE OF NITELLA

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TRANSVERSE ELECTRIC IMPEDANCE OF NITELLA

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The Rockefeller University Press
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  • Article

Abstract

Alternating current measurements have been taken on single Nitella cells over a frequency range from 30 to 2,500,000 cycles per second with the current flow perpendicular to the axis of the cell. The measuring cells were so constructed that electrolytes of any desired concentration could be circulated during the course of the measurements. The cellulose wall which surrounds the cell is found to play an important part in the interpretation of the results obtained. In a mature cell, this cellulose has a specific resistance of about 1000 ohm cm. which is independent of the medium in which the cell is suspended. The thickness of the wall is computed to be about 10 µ. The cell membrane is found to be virtually non-conducting, and to have a capacity of 0.94 µf./cm.2 ± 10 per cent and a phase angle of 80° ± 4°. The specific resistances of the sap were difficult to compute from data on living cells and were unsatisfactory because they were very much dependent upon the medium, while measurements on extracted sap gave 58 ohm cm. ± 8 per cent which was independent of the medium. There are indications that the chloroplasts have impedance properties similar to those of living cells.

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