CLAUS LUNAU / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY CLAUS LUNAU / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Damaged hearing. Computer artwork of the inner ear. At bottom is an enlarged image of a section through the organ of Corti, the auditory sense organ, which lines the spiral of the cochlea (upper centre) in the inner ear. It contains four rows of hair cells (light green), three to the right (outer hair cells) and one to the left (inner hair cells). On top of these cells are stereocilia, which touch the tectorial membrane (dark green) and detect tiny movements in it. These movements are a result of sound-induced pressures in the inner ear fluids. The stereocilia on the inner hair cells have become deformed and no longer touch the membrane causing damage to the hearing.
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