Most hearing loss results from lesions of the sensory cells and/or neurons of the auditory portion of the inner ear. To date, only the cochlear implantation offers long-term hearing-aid benefit, but still with limited performance and expensive cost. While the underlying causes of deafness are not clear, the death or hair cells and/or neurons and the loss of neuronal contacts are key pathological features. Pinpointing molecular events that control cell death in the cochlea is critical for the development of new strategies to prevent and treat deafness, whether in combination or not with cochlear implant therapy.
Keywords: cochlea, cell death, ototoxicity, noise trauma, neuroprotection, trophic factors
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