The distribution of potassium conductance across the surface of retinal glial (Müller) cells was determined in three species of fishes: two teleosts, the goldfish (Carassius auratus) and the alewife (Alosa pseudoharengus), and an elasmobranch, the spiny dogfish (Squalus acanthias). Potassium conductance was measured by monitoring cell depolarizations evoked by focal ejections of a 15 mEq/L K+ solution onto the surface of freshly dissociated cells. The K+ conductance distributions observed in these three species resembled those found previously in other animals with avascular retinas. In both alewife and dogfish, K+ conductance was highest in the endfoot; K+ conductance in the distal half of these cells ranged from 7.0 to 22.9% of the endfoot conductance. In goldfish, in contrast, K+ conductance was highest in the proximal region of the proximal process (114% of the endfoot conductance). As in the two other species, however, K+ conductance in goldfish was low in the distal half of the cell (7.6 to 40.1% of endfoot conductance). Mean input resistance values of isolated cells were as follows: goldfish, 12.5 MΩ; alewife, 26.4 MΩ; dogfish, 38.0 MΩ. The high resistance of dogfish Müller cells lacking their endfeet (749 MΩ) indicates that 95% of the cell membrane conductance is located in or near the endfoot in this species.
- Glial cells
- Potassium conductance distribution