Mathematical Sciences: Analysis of Biomathematical Models inSensory Physiology
Jonathan Bell Principal Investigator
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Mechanoreceptors in animals receive mechanical stimuli which are transformed into electrical responses. Research projects associated with this proposal are motivated by the study the principal investigator has made on a particular (tactile) receptor, the Pacinian corpuscle. Pacinian corpuscles receive mechanical stimuli in the form of displacement, hence stress, on an outer capsule composed of many layers of elastic membrane with fluid between these layers. One project is to analyze a model equation for the pressure field in the capsule derived via homogenization techniques under various boundary and initial conditions. Evidence supports the hypothesis that pressure transmitted through the capsule puts stress on the excitable dendritic membrane, which may possess a strain-activated ionic channel. The mathematical models will be refined to by comparing theoretical predictions with observations.