Modeling high-frequency electromotility of cochlear outer hair cell in microchamber experiment

Zhijie Liao, Aleksander S. Popel, William E. Brownell, Alexander A. Spector

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Scopus citations


Cochlear outer hair cells (OHC) are critically important for the amplification and sharp frequency selectivity of the mammalian ear. The microchamber experiment has been an effective tool to analyze the OHC high-frequency performance. In this study, the OHC electrical stimulation in the microchamber is simulated. The model takes into account the inertial and viscous properties of fluids inside and outside the cell as well as the viscoelastic and piezoelectric properties of the cell composite membrane (wall). The closed ends of the cylindrical cell were considered as oscillatory rigid plates. The final solution was obtained in terms of Fourier series, and it was checked against the available results of the microchamber experiment. The conditions of the interaction between the cell and pipette was analyzed, and it was found that the amount of slip along the contact surface has a significant effect on the cell electromotile response. The cell's length changes were computed as a function of frequency, and their dependence on the viscosities of both fluids and the cell wall was analyzed. The distribution of the viscous losses inside the fluids was also estimated. The proposed approach can help in a better understanding of the high-frequency OHC electromotility under experimental and physiological conditions.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2147-2157
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of the Acoustical Society of America
Issue number4 I
StatePublished - Apr 2005

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)
  • Acoustics and Ultrasonics


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