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Encyclopedia > Mechanoreceptor

A mechanoreceptor is a sensory receptor that responds to mechanical pressure or distortion. In a sensory system, a sensory receptor is a structure that recognizes a stimulus in the internal or external environment of an organism. ...


Location

Mechanoreceptors are at the ends of neurons.


Cutaneous mechanoreceptors with small, accurate receptive fields are found in areas needing accurate taction (e.g. the fingertips). Mechanoreceptors with large, less accurate receptive fields are found in areas needing less precice taction (ie. the palm). Receptive fields are areas of the retina, producing a change in the firing of cells in the visual system. ... Receptive fields are areas of the retina, producing a change in the firing of cells in the visual system. ...


Functions

Cutaneous mechanoreceptors provide the senses of touch, pressure, vibration, proprioception and others. Mechanoreceptors can also be separated into categories based on their rates of adaptivity. When a mechanoreceptor receives a stimulus it begins to fire impulses or action potentials at an elevated frequency (the stronger the stimulus the higher the frequency). The cell, however, will soon “adapt” to a constant or static stimulus and the pulses will subside to a normal rate. Receptors that adapt quickly (i.e. quickly return to a normal pulse rate) are referred to as ‘’phasic’’. Those receptors that are slow to return to their normal firing rate are called ‘’tonic’’. Phasic mechanoreceptors are useful in sensing such things as texture, vibrations, etc; whereas tonic receptors are useful for temperature and proprioception among others. Proprioception (from Latin proprius, meaning ones own and perception) is the sense of the position of parts of the body, relative to other neighbouring parts of the body. ... A. Schematic of an electrophysiological recording of an action potential showing the various phases which occur as the wave passes a point on a cell membrane. ... Proprioception (from Latin proprius, meaning ones own and perception) is the sense of the position of parts of the body, relative to other neighbouring parts of the body. ...


In sensory transduction, the afferent neurons transmit the message through a synapse in the thalamus to the somatosensory cortex. In physiology, transduction is the conversion of a stimulus from one form to another. ... An afferent neuron is a neuron that carries information from sensory receptors at its peripheral endings to the central nervous system. ... Illustration of the major elements in a prototypical synapse. ... The thalamus is a part of the brain. ... The lateral postcentral gyrus is a prominent structure in the parietal lobe of the human brain and an important landmark. ...


See also


A thermoreceptor is a sensory receptor that responds to heat and cold. ... A nociceptor is a sensory receptor that responds only after a high level of stimuli or a level enough to hurt the individual. ... Proprioception (from Latin proprius, meaning ones own and perception) is the sense of the position of parts of the body, relative to other neighbouring parts of the body. ...

Nervous system - Sensory system
Visual system - Auditory system - Olfactory system - Gustatory system - Somatosensory system

  Results from FactBites:
 
Mechanoreceptor - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (557 words)
A mechanoreceptor is a sensory receptor that responds to mechanical pressure or distortion.
Mechanoreceptors are primary neurons that respond to mechanical stimuli by firing action potentials.
Mechanoreceptors found in areas of the body with less tactile acuity tend to have larger receptive fields.
Mechanism (7064 words)
Type II Mechanoreceptor, low threshold, rapidly adapting, found in deeper layers of fibrous capsule, at junctions of fibrous capsule and fat, and in fat pads, stimulated at beginning and end of joint movement and are not active in non-mobile joints, respond primarily to extreme range of motion.
Abnormal mechanoreceptor stimulation in the atlanto-occipital joint resulting from misalignment and altered weight bearing is hypothesized to cause a nonfatiguing facilitation of mechanoreceptor signals to the utricle and saccule, which results in extensor muscle spasm and a functional short leg.
However, joint mechanoreceptors were not found to be in special abundance in the upper cervical spine, and it is now believed that muscle mechanoreceptors in the form of muscle spindles, concentrated within the small intervertebral upper cervical muscles, are the probable source for signaling head position and the tonic neck reflexes (15,29,30).
  More results at FactBites »

 
 

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