Sensory Transduction

Gordon L. Fain
Pub date
Jun 2003
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How are sights, sounds and smells converted into electrical signals in a form that can be interpreted by the nervous system? This process called sensory transduction began to be understood only recently as a result of the development of the techniques of patch-clamp recording and gene cloning.Beginning with fundamental properties of ion channels and G-protein coupled signal cascades, Sensory Transduction provides a comprehensive survey of this new knowledge that, taken as a whole, represents one of the greatest achievements of modern biology and neuroscience: the unravelling of the mechanism of sensation.


1 The Senses
2 Mechanisms of Sensation
3 Channels and Electrical Signals
4 Metabotropic Signal Transduction
5 Mechanoreceptors and Touch
6 Hair Cells and the Detection of Movement and Sound
7 Chemoreception and the Sense of Smell
8 Taste
9 Photoreception
10 Extra Sensory Receptors

About the author: 

Gordon L. Fain is Professor of Physiological Science, Ophthalmology, and Neuroscience at the University of California, Los Angeles. He received a Ph.D. in Biophysics from The Johns Hopkins University in 1973. His research, which has been supported by a Guggenheim Fellowship and a National Institutes of Health MERIT Award, is focused on the mechanism of visual transduction, specifically the role of Ca2+ in modulating the transduction cascade during light and dark adaptation, and the part played by constitutive activation in photoreceptor degeneration. Dr. Fain has been a visiting scholar at St. John's College (University of Cambridge, United Kingdom) and the Rockefeller Foundation Study Center (Bellagio, Italy). In addition to Sensory Transduction, he has authored Molecular and Cellular Physiology of Neurons (1999).

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