MIAMI, FLORIDA — The University of Miami Miller School of Medicine Department of Otolaryngology has received a $3 million grant from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) that will fund research related to biological treatments and clinical diagnosis of patients with hearing loss.
The grant allows Xue Zhong Liu, M.D., Ph.D., professor of otolaryngology, human genetics, biochemistry, and pediatrics to continue his ongoing hearing loss research. According to the announcement, with the latest grant from the NIH, Liu is now the most successfully funded genetic hearing loss researcher in the United States.
With the latest grant, Liu’s research team will “expand their comprehensive genomic and phenotypic deafness database for clinical care of deaf individuals, identify and characterize novel genes for hearing loss using state-of-the-art genomic tools, assess the impacts of genomic testing on patients, and conduct preclinical studies of gene- and cell-based therapy approach of CRISPR/Cas9-mediated genome editing to treat hearing loss.”
Genetic Hearing Loss Research
According to the researchers, the grant will enable scientists to translate basic research findings into clinical tools and the development of novel treatments for hereditary deafness.
“Recent breakthroughs in genetic screening, gene or cell-based therapeutics, and gene editing for the inner ear can lead to novel therapies for multiple classes of hereditary hearing loss. Together with our program for genetic hearing loss, these tools and strategies will create a clear path to clinical treatment and accelerate the advent of a new era of personalized medicine for hereditary hearing loss.”
–-Xue Zhong Liu, M.D., Ph.D.
The Genetic Hearing Loss Clinic at the UM Ear Institute is a multi-disciplinary program that provides diagnostic, molecular testing, genetic counseling, and intervention options for patients, and their families, who are dealing with various types of hearing loss.
Source: University of Miami