Auditory and Vestibular SystemsArtifactual voltage response recorded from hair cells with patch-clamp amplifiersMasetto, Sergio2,3; Weng, Tianxiang1; Valli, Paolo2; Correia, Manning J.1Author Information 1Department of Otolaryngology and Physiology and Biophysics, University of Texas Medical Branch, Galveston, TX 77555-1063, USA 2Department of Physiological and Pharmacological Sciences, University of Pavia, Via Forlanini 6, Pavia 27100, Italy. 3Corresponding Author: Sergio Masetto ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS: We gratefully acknowledge Dr Jacopo Magistretti, MD, PhD, for his valuable comments on the manuscripts. This work was supported by National Institute of Deafness and Other Communications Disorder Grants DC-02624, United States, and by Ministero dell'Università e della Ricerca Scientifica e Tecnologica (MURST), Rome, Italy. Received 12 April 1999; accepted 20 April 1999 NeuroReport: June 23rd, 1999 - Volume 10 - Issue 9 - p 1837-1841 Buy Abstract PATCH-CLAMP amplifiers (PCAs) are commonly used to characterize voltage- and current-clamp responses in the same cell. However, the cell membrane voltage response can be severely distorted by PCAs working in the current-clamp mode. Here we compare the voltage response of pigeon semicircular canal hair cells in situ, recorded with two different PCAs, and with a classic microelectrode bridge amplifier (BA). We found that the voltage response of hair cells recorded with PCAs differed significantly from that recorded with the BA. The true hair cell membrane voltage response to positive current steps was characterized by a strongly damped oscillation, whose frequency and duration depended on hair cell location in the sensory crista ampullaris. © 1999 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.