Efferent innervation and function

A Belén Elgoyhen and Paul A. Fuchs

in Oxford Handbook of Auditory Science: The Ear

Published in print January 2010 | ISBN: 9780199233397
Published online November 2012 | | DOI:

Series: Oxford Library of Psychology

 Efferent innervation and function

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  • Psychology
  • Cognitive Neuroscience
  • Cognitive Psychology


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Efferent neurones inhibit outer hair cells to modulate cochlear sensitivity. Mechanosensory hair cells of the organ of Corti and vestibular end-organs transmit information regarding sound and body position and motion to the central nervous system by way of peripheral afferent neurons. In return, the central nervous system provides feedback and modulates the afferent stream of information through efferent neurons. This article focuses on auditory signaling. Efferent activity inhibits auditory endorgans. It explains the efferent innervation of the mammaliam cochlea, its development, and discusses the efferent neurotransmitters. It also deals with hair cell responses and efferent effects on cochlear output. Furthermore, it gives information about hair cell nicotininc receptors, giving insights from genetically modified mice. While good progress has been made in identifying the ionic channels that contribute to the hair cell's cholinergic response, a variety of questions remain for future study, these challenges are forming the basis for future research.

Keywords: efferent neurones; mechanosensory hair cells; central nervous system; auditory signaling; efferent effects on cochlear output

Article.  12034 words. 

Subjects: Psychology ; Cognitive Neuroscience ; Cognitive Psychology

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