Conclusion: The endolymphatic sac is part of the membranous inner ear and is thought to play a role in the fluid homeostasis and immune defense of the inner ear; however, the exact function of the endolymphatic sac is not fully known. Many of the detected mRNAs in this study suggest that the endolymphatic sac has multiple and diverse functions in the inner ear. Objectives:The objective of this study was to provide a comprehensive review of the genes expressed in the endolymphatic sac in the rat and perform a functional characterization based on measured mRNA abundance. Methods:Microarray technology was used to investigate the gene expression of the endolymphatic sac with the surrounding dura. Characteristic and novel endolymphatic sac genes were determined by comparing with expressions in pure dura. Results: In all, 463 genes were identified specific for the endolymphatic sac. Functional annotation clustering revealed 29 functional clusters. © 2011 Informa Healthcare.
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