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Short latency compound action potentials from mammalian gravity receptor organsGravity receptor function was characterized in four mammalian species using far-field vestibular evoked potentials (VsEPs). VsEPs are compound action potentials of the vestibular nerve and central relays that are elicited by linear acceleration ramps applied to the cranium. Rats, mice, guinea pigs, and gerbils were studied. In all species, response onset occurred within 1.5 ms of the stimulus onset. Responses persisted during intense (116 dBSPL) wide-band (50 to 50 inverted question mark omitted inverted question mark000 Hz) forward masking, whereas auditory responses to intense clicks (112 dBpeSPL) were eliminated under the same conditions. VsEPs remained after cochlear extirpation but were eliminated following bilateral labyrinthectomy. Responses included a series of positive and negative peaks that occurred within 8 ms of stimulus onset (range of means at +6 dBre: 1.0 g/ms: P1=908 to 1062 micros, N1=1342 to 1475 micros, P2=1632 to 1952 micros, N2=2038 to 2387 micros). Mean response amplitudes at +6 dBre: 1.0 g/ms ranged from 0.14 to 0.99 microV. VsEP input/output functions revealed latency slopes that varied across peaks and species ranging from -19 to -51 micros/dB. Amplitude-intensity slopes also varied ranging from 0.04 to 0.08 microV/dB for rats and mice. Latency values were comparable to those of birds although amplitudes were substantially smaller in mammals. VsEP threshold values were considerably higher in mammals compared to birds and ranged from -8.1 to -10.5 dBre 1.0 g/ms across species. These results support the hypothesis that mammalian gravity receptors are less sensitive to dynamic stimuli than are those of birds.
Document ID
Document Type
Reprint (Version printed in journal)
Jones, T. A. (University of Missouri School of Medicine 207 Allton Bldg., DC375.00, Columbia, MO, United States)
Jones, S. M.
Date Acquired
August 22, 2013
Publication Date
October 1, 1999
Publication Information
Publication: Hearing research
Volume: 136
Issue: 1-2
ISSN: 0378-5955
Subject Category
Life Sciences (General)
Distribution Limits
Non-NASA Center
NASA Discipline Neuroscience