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Fig. 1

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Generic electrostatic model of calcium/sodium ion channel [11]. The model describes the channel's selectivity filter as an axisymmetric, water-filled pore of radius R = 0.3 nm and length L = 1.6 nm through a protein hub embedded in the cellular membrane. A centrally placed, uniform, rigid ring of negative charge Qf is embedded in the wall to represent the charged residues of real Ca2+/Na+ channels. We take both the water and the protein to be homogeneous continua describable by relative permittivities and εp = 2, respectively, together with an implicit model of ion hydration whose validity is discussed elsewhere. The moving monovalent Na+ and divalent Ca2+ ions are assumed to obey self-consistently both Poisson's electrostatic equation and the Langevin equation of motion.

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