The Basilar Membrane Nonlinear Input-Output Function

  • Graeme K. Yates
Conference paper
Part of the Lecture Notes in Biomathematics book series (LNBM, volume 87)


It is now clear that the mechanical behaviour of the basilar membrane (BM) is highly nonlinear and that this nonlinearity plays an important part in hearing. In particular, the nonlinear growth of the BM input-output (I/O) function (Sellick and Patuzzi, 1983; Robles et al; 1986; Yates et al. 1990) significantly extends the dynamic range of the cochlear response. and may well explain how the ear can respond to sounds which vary in loudness over more than 120 dB. Winter et al. (1990) recently demonstrated that the auditory nerve can code intensity-changes over a range in excess of 100 dB, thereby solving a problem which has existed for many years, and Yates et al. (1990) established that the BM nonlinear input-output function is almost certainly responsible for this (Sachs and Abbas, 1974).


Output Voltage Auditory Nerve Outer Hair Cell Basilar Membrane Recruitment Curve 
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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 1990

Authors and Affiliations

  • Graeme K. Yates
    • 1
  1. 1.The Auditory Laboratory, Department of PhysiologyThe University of Western AustraliaNedlandsWestern Australia

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