Topics include active biomechanics of sensory hair bundles, molecular composition of vestibular hair bundles, the tectorial membrane
, hair cell afferent synapses, efferent inhibition of the cochlea, inner ear connexin channels, the epidemiology of deafness, hidden hearing loss, and age-related hearing loss.
We have discovered that a tiny structure in the cochlea known as the tectorial membrane
plays an important role in this process, by acting as a storage depot for calcium ions.
Both the ear's sensitivity and its selectivity -- its ability to distinguish different frequencies of sound -- depend crucially on the behavior of a minuscule gelatinous structure in the inner ear called the tectorial membrane
, which Freeman and his students have been studying for more than a decade.
The current literature highlights injuries involving the transverse atlantal ligament , and tectorial membrane
injuries have been reported ; however, injuries to the posterior atlantoaxial ligament are not widely published.
Moreover, other structures (e.g., tectorial membrane
and Reissner's membrane) in the cochlea have also been suggested to be capable of supporting wave propagation inside the cochlea [21, 22], but their contribution to the cochlear mechanical dynamics has not been thoroughly studied and determined.
The hematoma was noted to overlay an intact, otherwise unremarkable tectorial membrane
and to extend distal to the membrane attachment at the dorsal mid C2 vertebral body, consistent with a subdural location (Figures 5,6).
Another anatomical change was detachment of the tectorial membrane
from outer hair cell stereocilia bundles (Figure 2).