Reissner's membrane

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Reissner's membrane
Diagrammatic longitudinal section of the cochlea. (label is 'vestibular membrane')
Cross section of the cochlea.
Latin membrana vestibularis ductus cochlearis
Gray's p.1054
Anatomical terminology

Reissner's membrane (vestibular membrane, vestibular wall) is a membrane inside the cochlea of the inner ear. It separates scala media from scala vestibuli. Together with the basilar membrane it creates a compartment in the cochlea filled with endolymph, which is important for the function of the organ of Corti. It primarily functions as a diffusion barrier, allowing nutrients to travel from the perilymph to the endolymph of the membranous labyrinth.

Histologically, the membrane is composed of two layers of flattened epithelium, separated by a basal lamina. Its structure suggests that its function is transport of fluid and electrolytes.

Reissner's membrane is named after German anatomist Ernst Reissner (1824-1878).

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