Your Name Your Prof Name Subject Date Mechanism of transduction of receptors of special senses Introduction In simple terms senses are the physiological capacities of organisms that provide data for awareness of sensation. There are two types of senses - General senses and Special Senses…
Certain other stimuli like Hearing (Audition), Sight (Vision), Taste (Gustation), Smell (Olfaction), Balance (Equilibrium) are received by receptor organs like Cochlea and Membranous labrinyth (ear), Bulbus oculi (Eye), taste buds in mouth, and olfactory hair cells in nose. These senses are known as Special Senses. The specialized cells with nerve endings that respond to internal or external environment of body are called sensory receptors. The sensory information received by these receptors reaches the Central Nervous System and the impression produced by the brain using this information is called sensation Description of Senses Below are the descriptions of three of the special senses – smell, taste, and hearing. Olfaction: The Sense of Smell There are lots of molecules of the various materials present in the air we breathe. Smell depends on sensory receptors that react towards airborne chemicals. These sensory receptors are called chemoreceptors. These chemoreceptors are located in olfactory epithelium which is present in the upper interval of nasal chambers in the brain. Three different types of cells are present in the olfactory epithelium: Sensory neurons: Primary cilium is present with each of them. Supporting cells: They are present between sensory neurons. Basal cells: They divide in regular interval and produce new sensory neurons which replace the old or died sensory neurons. The olfactory epithelium contains 10-20 million olfactory receptors within 5 sq cm. This (olfaction) is the only sensation that reaches directly to cerebral cortex without synapsing in the thalamus Mechanism of Transduction of the Receptors for Olfaction Source: (J. W. Kimball) Sensory neurons contain primary cilium. These primary cilia are submerged in a mucous layer. Odorant molecules which one can smell in air get dissolved in mucous layer. In mucous layer they bind to the cilia. When these odorant molecules bind to cilia it activates G protein which is attached to olfactory receptors in cytoplasmic side. The olfactory receptors are distinguished as one of the largest groups of G protein linked receptors. In short these G-protein linked receptors help in the biosynthesis of neurotransmitters, cAMP and ionsitol tri phosphate which helps in further release of cations resulting into action potential and signaling. When we look in detail, the coupling of G protein to receptors leads to activation of adenyl cyclase. Now adenyl cyclase, an enzyme, catalyzes the conversion of ATP to cAMP , the second messenger in cystol. In fact, there is one more second messenger found in some vertebrate species, that is IP3 (Ionistol triphosphate). IP3 as well as cAMP are described to have the same function but chemically they are quiet different and they have two separate signal transduction pathways in olfactory neurons (Schild and Restrepo, 1998). The transduction pathway of cAMP is that, it opens up the ligand gated channels of sodium into the cell for facilitated diffusion of Na+. Due to the influx of Na+ there is a reduction of potential across plasma membrane. When this depolarization reaches threshold, it lead to generation of action potential. Action potential performs back along olfactory nerve to the brain. The brain judges this and olfactory signals reach it as particular odor. Gustation: The Sense of taste Taste is related to chemical sensing system. It is a complicated process and occurs when a molecule is ...
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