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J Gen Physiol. Jun 1, 1974; 63(6): 757–772.
PMCID: PMC2203572
A Mechanism by Which the Hair Cells of the Inner Ear Transduce Mechanical Energy into a Modulated Train of Action Potentials
Richard Malcolm
From the Defence and Civil Institute of Environmental Medicine, Toronto, Ontario, Canada M3M3B9
Received July 24, 1973
Abstract
Physical models of the hair cells of the inner ear were built and analyzed. These models suggest that a straightforward physical process is capable of modulating the electrical resistance of the hair cell. Strong evidence in the literature indicates that such a change in resistance would modulate an otherwise steady electrical current which flows across the hair cell. This would cause the resting potential of the hair cell to change in a systematic fashion, eventually giving rise to the modulated train of action potentials in the neurons leading from the hair cell to the central nervous system.
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