Modelling Input-Output Characteristics of the Inner Hair Cell
The transduction in the cochlea contains several nonlinear stages. Singlefiber recordings, however, sometimes are predominantly linear, whereas other recordings show strong nonlinear aspects. Horst et al. (1985, 1986b, 1990) have demonstrated that the type of stimulus used is very critical. In particular the short term spectral content in relation with the instantaneous amplitude of the stimulus turned out to be an important factor. Using a set of stimuli with relatively simple amplitude spectrum but strong variations of the waveform envelope they found very level-dependent responses. The majority of their data (collected from neurons with high spontaneous discharge rates) could be adequately described by the involvement of an input-output (10) function, which was linear at low and intermediate stimulus levels and compressive at higher stimulus levels. The data collected from neurons with low spontaneous rates behaved differently at low levels (Horst et al., 1986b). That is, at low levels they could be described with an expansive IO function.
KeywordsHair Cell Response Spectrum Transmitter Release Stimulus Level Complex Stimulus
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