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Developmental changes in the coupling between Ca2+ entry and exocytosis were studied in mouse inner hair cells (IHCs) which, together with the afferent endings, form the primary synapse of the mammalian auditory system. Ca2+ currents (ICa) and changes in membrane capacitance (DeltaCm) were recorded using whole-cell voltage clamp from cells maintained at(More)
Before the onset of hearing at postnatal day 12, mouse inner hair cells (IHCs) produce spontaneous and evoked action potentials. These spikes are likely to induce neurotransmitter release onto auditory nerve fibres. Since immature IHCs express both alpha1D (Cav1.3) Ca2+ and Na+ currents that activate near the resting potential, we examined whether these two(More)
Mammalian cochlear inner hair cells (IHCs) are specialized to process developmental signals during immature stages and sound stimuli in adult animals. These signals are conveyed onto auditory afferent nerve fibres. Neurotransmitter release at IHC ribbon synapses is controlled by L-type Ca(V)1.3 Ca(2+) channels, the biophysics of which are still unknown in(More)
Developmental changes in electrophysiological membrane properties of mouse cochlear inner hair cells (IHCs) were studied from just after terminal differentiation up to functional maturity. As early as embryonic day 14.5 (E14.5) newly differentiated IHCs express a very small outward K+ current that is largely insensitive to 4-aminopyridine (4-AP). One day(More)
Deafness is a condition with a high prevalence worldwide, produced primarily by the loss of the sensory hair cells and their associated spiral ganglion neurons (SGNs). Of all the forms of deafness, auditory neuropathy is of particular concern. This condition, defined primarily by damage to the SGNs with relative preservation of the hair cells, is(More)
From just after birth, mouse inner hair cells (IHCs) expressed a Ca(2+)-activated K(+) current that was reduced by intracellular BAPTA at concentrations >or= 1 mM. The block of this current by nifedipine suggests the direct involvement of Ca(v)1.3 Ca(2+) channels in its activation. On the basis of its high sensitivity to apamin (K(D) 360 pM) it was(More)
Spontaneous action potential activity is crucial for mammalian sensory system development. In the auditory system, patterned firing activity has been observed in immature spiral ganglion and brain-stem neurons and is likely to depend on cochlear inner hair cell (IHC) action potentials. It remains uncertain whether spiking activity is intrinsic to developing(More)
The ribbon synapses of auditory inner hair cells (IHCs) undergo morphological and electrophysiological transitions during cochlear development. Here we report that myosin VI (Myo6), an actin-based motor protein involved in genetic forms of deafness, is necessary for some of these changes to occur. By using post-embedding immunogold electron microscopy, we(More)
The deafness (dn) and Beethoven (Bth) mutant mice are models for profound congenital deafness (DFNB7/B11) and progressive hearing loss (DFNA36), respectively, caused by recessive and dominant mutations of transmembrane cochlear-expressed gene 1 (TMC1), which encodes a transmembrane protein of unknown function. In the mouse cochlea Tmc1 is expressed in both(More)
MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are small noncoding RNAs able to regulate a broad range of protein-coding genes involved in many biological processes. miR-96 is a sensory organ-specific miRNA expressed in the mammalian cochlea during development. Mutations in miR-96 cause nonsyndromic progressive hearing loss in humans and mice. The mouse mutant diminuendo has a single(More)