Temporal aspects of the effects of cooling on responses of single auditory nerve fibers

Kevin K. Ohlemiller, Jonathan H. Siegel

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


During an investigation of the effects of cochlear cooling on frequency tuning and input/output relations of single auditory nerve fibers in gerbil (Ohlemiller and Siegel (1994) Hear. Res. 80, 174-190), cooling-related changes in post-stimulus time histogram (PSTH) shape and phase-locking to tonebursts were characterized in a small sample of neurons. Local cochlear cooling by 5-10°C below normal core temperature did not alter overall PSTH shape, although some evidence was found for a reduction in the time constants of rapid and short term rate adaptation. The relative contributions of rapid and short term response components appeared unaltered. Effects of cooling on phase-locking were assessed by calculating the synchronization index for responses to intense (> 70 dB SPL) tonebursts at 0.5, 1.0, and 2.0 kHz. Synchronization filter functions exhibited modest reductions in both magnitude and the upper frequency limit of phase-locking. The effects of cooling on the temporal character of responses appear distinct from those of a simple reduction in stimulus intensity. Results are interpreted in terms of cooling-related changes in responses of cochlear hair cells and afferent neurons, and suggest that temperature artifacts are unlikely to underlie reported species differences in PSTH shape and phase-locking.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)78-86
Number of pages9
JournalHearing research
Issue number1-2
StatePublished - Sep 1998


  • Cochlea
  • Cooling
  • Gerbil
  • Peak-splitting
  • Phase- locking
  • Rate adaptation
  • Synchronization index
  • Temperature


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