Gating Compliance, a Reduction in Hair-Bundle Stiffness Associated with the Gating of Transduction Channels in Hair Cells from the Bullfrog’s Sacculus
The electrical response of any organ of the internal ear or lateral-line system depends upon the hair cell’s sensitivity to mechanical stimulation. This mechano-sensitivity resides in the hair bundle, a cluster of 20–300 stereocilia that extends from the apical surface of the cell. Sound, acceleration, or water motion causes movement of an accessory structure such as a tectorial membrane, otolithic membrane, or cupula, which in turn deflects the hair bundle’s tip. By opening transduction channels, excitatory deflection then produces a depolarizing receptor potential which modulates the cell’s release of synaptic transmitter and hence the activity in eighth-nerve fibers.
KeywordsHair Cell Elastic Element Hair Bundle Tectorial Membrane Transduction Element
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