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Biosystems. 2018 Nov;173:181-190. doi: 10.1016/j.biosystems.2018.08.006. Epub 2018 Sep 1.

Nonlinear calcium ion waves along actin filaments control active hair-bundle motility.

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Department of Physics, University of Alberta, Edmonton, Alberta, Canada; Department of Experimental Oncology, Cross Cancer Institute, Edmonton, Alberta, Canada; Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering, Politecnico di Torino, Torino, Italy.
University of Novi Sad, Faculty of Technical Sciences, Novi Sad, Serbia.
University of Novi Sad, Faculty of Technical Sciences, Novi Sad, Serbia. Electronic address:
University of Belgrade, Institute of Nuclear Sciences Vinca, Belgrade, Serbia.


Calcium ions (Ca2+) tune and control numerous diverse aspects of cochlear and vestibular physiological processes. This paper is focused on the Ca2+ control of mechanotransduction in sensory hair cells in the context of polyelectrolyte properties of actin filaments within the hair-bundles of inner ear. These actin filaments appear to serve as efficient pathways for the flow of Ca2+ ions inside stereocilia. We showed how this can be utilized for tuning of force-generating myosin motors. In an established model, we unified the Ca2+ nonlinear dynamics involved in the control of myosin adaptation motors with mechanical displacements of hair-bundles. The model shows that the characteristic time scales fit reasonably well with the available experimental data for spontaneous oscillations in the inner ear. This scenario promises to fill a gap in our understanding of the role of Ca2+ ions in the regulation of processes in the auditory cells of the inner ear.


Actin filament; Calcium ion dynamics; Hair cells; Myosin motor; Nonlinear model

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