The giant axon of this extreme euryhaline osmoconformer possess an unusual ability to produce action potentials of large amplitude over a wide range of ionic dilution when constant osmotic concentration is maintained by the addition of mannitol to the bathing medium. Ionic dilution under these circumstances causes a decline in the overshoot of the action potential (resulting largely from reduction in [Na+]0) and an appreciable axonal hyperpolarization (primarily as a result of decrease in [K+]0). This hyperpolarization tends to compensate for the reduction in the extent of the overshoot and so maintains the amplitude of the sodium-mediated action potentials during isosmotic dilution of the bathing medium. The axonal hyperpolarization also appears to reduce sodium inactivation so as to maintain a rapid rate of rise of the action potential despite drastic reduction in the ionic concentration of the bathing medium. Prolonged exposure to reduced ionic concentrations appears to induce a ouabain sensitive reduction in intracellular sodium concentration which increases the sodium gradient across the axon membrane during isosmotic dilution of the external medium.

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