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Cricket tympanal organ revisited: morphology, development and possible functions of the adult-specific chitin core beneath the anterior tympanal membrane

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Title: Cricket tympanal organ revisited: morphology, development and possible functions of the adult-specific chitin core beneath the anterior tympanal membrane
Authors: Nishino, Hiroshi Browse this author →KAKEN DB
Domae, Mana Browse this author
Takanashi, Takuma Browse this author
Okajima, Takaharu Browse this author
Keywords: Epithelial cells
Tracheal vesicles
Tonotopic organization
Issue Date: 14-Aug-2019
Publisher: Springer
Journal Title: Cell and tissue research
Volume: 377
Issue: 2
Start Page: 193
End Page: 214
Publisher DOI: 10.1007/s00441-019-03000-2
Abstract: Vertebrates and insects are phylogenetically separated by millions of years but have commonly developed tympanal membranes for efficiently converting airborne sound to mechanical oscillation in hearing. The tympanal organ of the field cricket Gryllus bimaculatus, spanning 200 mu m, is one of the smallest auditory organs among animals. It indirectly links to two tympana in the prothoracic tibia via tracheal vesicles. The anterior tympanal membrane is smaller and thicker than the posterior tympanal membrane and it is thought to have minor function as a sound receiver. Using differential labeling of sensory neurons/surrounding structures and three-dimensional reconstructions, we revealed that a shell-shaped chitin mass and associated tissues are hidden behind the anterior tympanal membrane. The mass, termed the epithelial core, is progressively enlarged by discharge of cylindrical chitin from epithelial cells that start to aggregate immediately after the final molt and it reaches a plateau in size after 6 days. The core, bridging between the anterior tracheal vesicle and the fluid-filled chamber containing sensory neurons, is supported by a taut membrane, suggesting the possibility that anterior displacements of the anterior tracheal vesicle are converted into fluid motion via a lever action of the core. The epithelial core did not exist in tympanal organ homologs of meso- and metathoracic legs or of nymphal legs. Taken together, the findings suggest that the epithelial core, a potential functional homolog to mammalian ossicles, underlies fine sound frequency discrimination required for adult-specific sound communications.
Rights: This is a post-peer-review, pre-copyedit version of an article published in Cell and Tissue Research. The final authenticated version is available online at:
Type: article (author version)
Appears in Collections:電子科学研究所 (Research Institute for Electronic Science) > 雑誌発表論文等 (Peer-reviewed Journal Articles, etc)

Submitter: 西野 浩史

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