Researchers Develop Model to Estimate Hidden Hearing Loss

BOSTON, MASSACHUSSETTS — Researchers from Mass Eye and Ear have developed a word-score model capable of estimating the amount of hidden hearing loss in human ears. In a new study published June 23 in Scientific Reports, a team of Harvard Medical School researchers at Massachusetts Eye and Ear’s Eaton-Peabody Laboratories determined average speech scores as a function…

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Hypertension Drug Prevents Tumor-Induced Hearing Loss in Mouse Model

BOSTON, MASSACHUSSETTS – New research led by investigators at Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) and Massachusetts Eye and Ear indicates that the blood pressure drug losartan may benefit patients with neurofibromatosis type 2 (NF2), a hereditary condition associated with vestibular schwannomas, or noncancerous tumors along the nerves in the brain that are involved with hearing and balance. The…

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otc hearing aids fda approval

Mass Eye and Ear Experts Urge FDA to Allow OTC Hearing Aids

BOSTON, MASSACHUSSETTS — Hearing loss experts at Mass Eye and Ear are advocating for the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to implement a law passed by Congress permitting the sale of over-the-counter (OTC) hearing aids. In a new column published November 19, 2020 in The New England Journal of Medicine, the experts write that the FDA has remained silent…

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bone density medication hearing loss

Could Bone Density Medication Reverse Hearing Loss?

BOSTON, MASSACHUSETTS — Preliminary findings from Harvard Medical School researchers at Massachusetts Eye and Ear may pave the way for trials to test bone density medications for hearing loss. Hearing loss caused by damaged nerves, whether from sound exposure or aging, is irreversible. There are currently no medications approved by the Food and Drug Administration…

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Biomarkers of Brain Function Identified That May Lead to Clinical Tests for Hidden Hearing Loss

BOSTON, MASSACHUSSETTS — A pair of biomarkers of brain function — one that represents “listening effort,” and another that measures ability to process rapid changes in frequencies — may help to explain why a person with normal hearing may struggle to follow conversations in noisy environments, according to a new study led by Massachusetts Eye and Ear…

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inner ear hair cells

Reprogramming Inner Ear to Regrow Lost Hair Cells? New Discovery Holds Promise for Future Hearing Loss Treatments

BOSTON, MASSACHUSETTS — A new discovery from a team led by Massachusetts Eye and Ear researchers may bring scientists a step closer to developing treatments that regrow the missing cells that cause hearing loss. In a new study, published online December 4, 2019, in Nature Communications, scientists report a new strategy to induce cell division in the…

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cochlea hair cell restoration

Cochlear Architecture Critical Part of Hair Cell Regeneration

The ability to restore hearing by regenerating outer hair cells in the cochlea of the inner ear, sometimes referred to as biological solutions for hearing loss, has shown success in restoring hearing sensitivity in animal studies. New research, however, indicates that restoring hearing is more than regenerating lost or damaged outer hair cells. In a…

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vestibular schwannoma drug treatment

Abortion Drug Holds Promise as Treatment for Acoustic Tumors

The Boston Business Journal reported this week that Massachusetts Eye and Ear researchers plan to launch trials of a drug commonly used to induce chemical abortion, called mifepristone, to treat vestibular schwannoma. Vestibular schwannoma, a rare tumor, usually causes unilateral hearing loss and tinnitus, but can also cause dizziness and facial nerve paralysis. Because of…

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akouos gene therapy hearing loss treatment

Boston-Based Biotech, Akouos, Nets $7.5M Investment to “Restore and Preserve Hearing”

BOSTON, MASSACHUSETTS — Biotechnology startup, Akouos, announced that it has raised $7.5 million in seed funding. The company, which was spun out of the Harvard Innovation Labs, is developing novel therapies and delivery systems to prevent hearing loss and restore hearing in genetically defined populations. New Enterprise Associates (NEA), who led the seed funding along…

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Boston cop who says she’s heard well with hearing aids for 15 years, is forced out

By David H. Kirkwood BOSTON—Boston Police Detective Delores Facey is the latest cop to be forced into retirement because of hearing loss, even though she insists that with hearing aids, which she has worn for the past 15 years, she is fully capable of performing her duties. The officer, a 19-year veteran of the department,…

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