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...interior. If this depolarization, called generator potential, reaches a critical point, the membrane then generates an action potential. The critical point of depolarization that must be overcome in order to activate an action potential is called threshold.The action potentials are caused by depolarization of the membrane above the threshold.
In the repolarization phase, the sodium channel is deactivated and the conductivity of membrane for potassium increases. These positive ions follow its chemical and electrical gradient and exit from the cell, thus gradually inverting the membrane potential. In the recovery phase, the active sodium/potassium pump reestablish the ionic levels which were altered during the action potential: for each sodium ion which is transported from the inside to the outside, a corresponding potassium is transported in the opposite direction.
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