It is surrounded by an insulating layer of adipose tissue and innervated by the superficial ophthalmic nerve. Its anatomy and innervation suggest it is an electroreceptive organ used for finding prey in the dark. This is supported by experiments which showed that coelacanths react to electrical fields produced by a submersible.
- M., Berquist, Rachel; L., Galinsky, Vitaly; M., Kajiura, Stephen; R., Frank, Lawrence. "The coelacanth rostral organ is a unique low-resolution electro-detector that facilitates the feeding strike". Scientific Reports. 5. doi:10.1038/srep08962.
- Bemis, William E.; Hetherington, Thomas E. (1982). "The Rostal Organ of Latimeria chalumnae: Morphological Evidence of an Electroreceptive Function". Copeia. 1982 (2): 467–71. doi:10.2307/1444635. JSTOR 1444635.
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