A drug that restores hearing in Deaf mice.
Advances in regenerative medicine are coming in fast and furious these days, and a remarkable new breakthrough can be added to the list. Scientists at Massachusetts Eye and Ear and Harvard Medical School have restored partial hearing in mice suffering from sensorineural hearing loss a condition that happens after prolonged exposure to noise.
Given the rise of an aging population not to mention a preponderance of people who blast their ears with portable MP3 players it's an important bit of scientific insight that could someday help millions of people get their hearing back.
To learn more about this important breakthrough, we contacted lead researcher Dr. Albert Edge, whose study appears in the January 10 issue of Neuron.
Edge agreed that sensorineural hearing loss is a growing concern.
"The National Institute of Deafness and Communications Disorders of the NIH estimates that approximately 15 percent of Americans between the ages of 20 and 69 have hearing loss due to exposure to loud sounds or noise at work or in leisure activities," he told io9. "So this is a very serious problem with little that can be done to treat it."
No doubt, it's a problem that currently affects 250 million people worldwide.
Edge says that hearing aids can help, but his team is hoping to develop a treatment that goes all the way one that can actually replace the lost cells.... Read more: http://io9.com/5974633/a-drug-that-restores-hearing-in-deaf-mice
Related: Deaf Gerbils 'Hear Again' After Stem Cell Cure