IN MAINTAINING the homeostatic conditions of the soft tissues, the fluids of the inner ear serve three major functions. They provide for the metabolic exchange of nutrients and waste products within the delicate structures of the organ of Corti. They maintain the distribution of ions with the resulting resting potentials that apparently are important for the conversion of energy. And they control and furnish the conditions necessary for the transfer of vibrations to the basilar membrane.
It has long been thought that endolymph, the fluid within the scala media, provided the nutrients to, and carried the waste products from, the cells of the organ of Corti. This seemed reasonable because it appeared that the actual blood supply had to be remote so that any pulsations would not be conveyed to the sensory cells. Secretion of nutrients from the stria vascularis to the endolymph which then diffused this material
Lawrence M. Dynamics of Labyrinthine Fluids. Arch Otolaryngol. 1969;89(1):85–89. doi:10.1001/archotol.1969.00770020087013
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