Effects of hypothermia on ionic movement in the guinea pig cochlea

Teruzo Konishi, Alec N. Salt, Philip E. Hamrick

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

18 Scopus citations


Anesthetized and immobilized guinea pigs were subjected to hypothermia. During cooling, the cochlea: microphonics and endocochlear potential decreased and K+ concentrations in both endolymph and perilymph were not significantly affected. The rate constant for K+ turnover to endolymph was determined by uptake of 43K into the endolymph when the perilymphatic space was perfused with artificial perilymph containing 43K. The rate constant for K+ decreased significantly in hypothermic guinea pigs when compared with that in normal guinea pigs. The K+ conductance of the endolymph-perilymph barrier, estimated from the rate constant, showed a marked decrease in hypothermic guinea pigs and was comparable with the K conductance, calculated from the rate of change of the endolymph K+ concentration relative to the K+ electrochemical potential difference, recorded during permanent anoxia. These results suggest that hypothermia not only suppresses the active K+ transport system but also decreases the K+ permeability of the endolymph-perilymph barrier.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)265-278
Number of pages14
JournalHearing research
Issue number3-4
StatePublished - Jul 1981


  • cochlea
  • endolymph-perilymph barrier
  • guinea pig
  • hypothermia
  • ion movement
  • membrane permeability


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