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The tectorial membrane (TM) is a polyelectrolyte gel. Hence, its chemical, electrical, mechanical, and osmotic properties are inextricably linked. We review, integrate, and interpret recent findings on these properties in isolated TM preparations. The dimensions of the TM in alligator lizard, chick, and mouse are sensitive to bath ion concentrations of(More)
The solid component of the tectorial membrane (TM) is a porous matrix made up of the radial collagen fibers and the striated sheet matrix. The striated sheet matrix is believed to contribute to shear impedance in both the radial and longitudinal directions, but the molecular mechanisms involved have not been determined. A missense mutation in Tecta, a gene(More)
The tectorial membrane (TM) has a significantly larger stiffness in the radial direction than other directions, a prominent mechanical anisotropy that is believed to be critical for the proper functioning of the cochlea. To determine the molecular basis of this anisotropy, we measured material properties of TMs from mice with a targeted deletion of Col11a2,(More)
In mammals sound is coupled to the inner ear through a common set of structures, which vary in their configuration among species and individuals. Our goal is to understand the relationships between the structure and acoustic function of the ear. This knowledge can be applied (a) to suggest the evolutionary processes that produced these structural(More)
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