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Curr Opin Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg. 2008 Oct;16(5):458-64. doi: 10.1097/MOO.0b013e32830e20c4.

The tectorial membrane: one slice of a complex cochlear sandwich.

Author information

1
School of Life Sciences, University of Sussex, Falmer, Brighton, UK. g.p.richardson@sussex.ac.uk

Abstract

PURPOSE OF REVIEW:

The review is both timely and relevant, as recent findings have shown the tectorial membrane plays a more dynamic role in hearing than hitherto suspected, and that many forms of deafness can result from mutations in tectorial membrane proteins.

RECENT FINDINGS:

Main themes covered are the molecular composition, the structural organization and properties of the tectorial membrane, the role of the tectorial membrane as a second resonator and a structure within which there is significant longitudinal coupling, and how mutations in tectorial membrane proteins cause deafness in mice and men.

CONCLUSION:

Findings from experimental models imply that the tectorial membrane plays multiple, critical roles in hearing. These include coupling elements along the length of the cochlea, supporting a travelling wave and ensuring the gain and timing of cochlear feedback are optimal. The clinical findings suggest stable, moderate-to-severe forms of hereditary hearing loss may be diagnostic of a mutation in TECTA, a gene encoding one of the major, noncollagenous proteins of the tectorial membrane.

PMID:
18797289
PMCID:
PMC2874155
DOI:
10.1097/MOO.0b013e32830e20c4
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article
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