New Cell Pictures Show on Hearing!!

October 20, 2011 at 10:55 pm Leave a comment

To go along with a previous post on how hair cells dance with vibrations (from music), here’s the most recent Cell Pictures show on hearing (link at bottom).  Actin-rich bundles called Stereocilia that protrude from hair cells lining the inner ear vibrate in response to sound waves.

The image below highlights the hearing mechanism in flies, which has similar characteristics to hearing in vertebrates: sensory neurons react to sound-wave induced vibrations, converting mechanical force into electrical signals.  The sensory neurons in flies reside in a stretch receptor called the Johnston’s Organ.

I wonder if social behavior in certain animals would be altered  by replacing their hearing sensory cells and proteins with those of different animals.  For instance, would a cat still be intimidated by a dog’s bark if it had a dog’s hearing organs?

How Flies Hear


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