New types of neurons have been identified in ear

They identified new types of neurons in the ear

Researchers have identified three new types of neurons in the auditory system. The discovery could lead to new therapies for various types of hearing disorders, such as tinnitus and age-related hearing loss.

Researchers at the Karolinska Institute have identified three types of neuralow, ktore receive auditory impressions. The Swedish scientists’ research was published in „Nature Communications”.

When sound reaches the inner ear, it is converted into electrical signals, ktore transmitted to moof the throat by the comoear nerve cells. Until now, it was thought that there were only two types of such comorek referred to as type 1 and type 2. Research at the Karolinska Institute has shown that comorki type 1 actually contain three very rodifferent types of comorek, which agrees with previous studies showing changes in the electrical properties and acoustic response of comorek type 1.

– We now know that there are three roThe different pathways to the central auditory system, not just one – said Francois Lallemend, leader of the research group at the Karolinska Institute, whichory led the research. – As a result, we are able to better understand the role played by roThe neurons during hearing. We checked the roAlso, whichore genes are active in eacholnych types of comorek – added.

Teamoł conducted studies on mice using the relatively new technique of single-cell sequencingorek RNA. The result of the work is a catalog of active genoin the comonerve cells, whichory can give scientists a solid foundation for a better understanding of the auditory system, as well as for developing new therapies and drugow.

– Our research may open the way to developing genetic tools thatore may be used in new treatments roThe rare typesoin hearing disorders, such as tinnitus. Mapping can roalso lead to roSpecific waysoIn influencing the function of individualosingle comonerve reqs in the body – admitted Lallemend.

These three types of neuronow probably play a role in decoding sound intensity (loudness), a function thatora is crucial when discussingoin noisy environments and relies on its ability to filter out background noise. This property is roalso important in roof hearing disorders, such as tinnitus or hypersensitivity to sounds.

– Once we know whichore neurons cause hypersensitivity to sound, we will be able to begin developing new therapies to protect or repair them. The next step will be to show the impact of these individualolne comork neurons on the auditory system, which could lead to better hearing aidsoin hearing – explained Lallemend.

Researchers have shown roThe research also porownaw studies on adult mice that these rodifferent types of neuronow are already present at birth.

Sourceobackground: Karolinska Institutet, fot. CC BY 2.0/ Travis Isaacs/ Flickr