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Access Type

Campus-Only Access for Five (5) Years

Document Type


Degree Program

Neuroscience & Behavior

Degree Type

Master of Science (M.S.)

Year Degree Awarded


Month Degree Awarded



In the amphibian auditory system, a subset of hair cells is known to be frequency tuned via electrical resonance. This tuning is thought to contribute to frequency selectivity of the information leaving the auditory periphery via the auditory afferent fibers. At the same time, while most, if not all, afferent fibers are shown to be frequency tuned, electrical resonance has only been experimentally demonstrated in a subset of amphibian auditory hair cells. In this thesis, we validate and use a novel Zap current method to probe the electrical resonance of the bullfrog amphibian papilla hair cells. We uncover the existence of two previously unknown types of electrically resonant auditory hair cells. We then show the existence of resonant hair cells across the length of amphibian papilla, with the range of frequency tuning that is nearly indistinguishable from that previously reported in the of auditory fibers. Therefore, this work further validates amphibian hair cell frequency resonance as the possible mechanism underlying frequency selectivity of the subsequent stages in auditory signal transduction.


First Advisor

Josef G Trapani