Research Focus of the Laboratory:
Our laboratory conducts basic biomedical research aimed at defining the molecular and cellular mechanisms responsible for generating the unique ionic and electrochemical gradients in the inner ear. Biochemical and histochemical techniques are used to identify and determine the precise cellular distribution of ion transport mediators and their associated regulatory proteins. Emphasis is placed on relating changes in auditory function with alterations in the expression of key proteins promoted by disease, noise-trauma and aging. In vivo and in vitro studies are conducted using mouse and gerbil animal models. Recent work focuses on direct correlational studies of human auditory performance with structural and molecular changes in the human inner ear. This research is supported in part by funding from the National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders.