“Cocktail” may protect against hearing loss

David Kirkwood
April 6, 2011

ST. LOUIS–Researchers at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis have found that administering low doses of “a cocktail” of drugs to mice before they are exposed to loud noise reduces their hearing loss when given. The drugs, all FDA-approved for other conditions, did not totally prevent hearing loss in mice following sustained exposure to noise at 110 dB. However, they did reduce the loss by about 10 to 30 dB.


Jianxin Bao, PhD, research associate professor of otolaryngology at Washington University School of Medicine, reported on his group’s work at the 2111 meeting of the Association for Research in Otolaryngology.

For their work, Bao and colleagues chose two anti-convulsant drugs prescribed for people with epilepsy and two drugs from the glucocorticoid family, often used to treat allergies and asthma.

Next, the group will test the drugs in animals that model human hearing more closely than do mice.

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