Cognitive neuroscientists from the Higher School of Economics and Aarhus University experimentally demonstrate how spatial navigation impacts language comprehension. The results of the study have been published in NeuroImage.
A new study led by University of Maryland neuroscientists is the first to identify a mechanism that could explain an early link between sound input and cognitive function, often called the 'Mozart effect.' Working with an animal model, the researchers found that a type of cell present in the brain's primary processing area during early development, long thought to form structural scaffolding with no role in transmitting sensory information, may conduct such signals after all.
Want to restore hearing by injecting stem cells into the inner ear? Well, that can be a double-edged sword. Inner ear stem cells can be converted to auditory neurons that could reverse deafness, but the process can also make those cells divide too quickly, posing a cancer risk, according to a study led by Rutgers University-New Brunswick scientists.
A new Tel Aviv University study solves a critical piece of the puzzle of human deafness by identifying the first group of long non-coding RNAs (lncRNAs) in the auditory system.
Would you want a spider web inside your ear? Probably not. But if you're able to put aside the creepy factor, new research from Binghamton University, State University of New York shows that fine fibers like spider silk actually improve the quality of microphones for hearing aids.
A research advance co-led by Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine's Kumar Alagramam, PhD, may stop the progression of hearing loss and lead to significant preservation of hearing in people with Usher syndrome type III, a form of hereditary hearing loss linked to defects in the sensory "hair" cells in the inner ear. USH3 is caused by a mutation in the clarin-1 gene.
Researchers found mutations in a master-switch protein called Epithelial Splicing Regulatory Protein 1 in individuals with a type of congenital hearing loss. In general, what connects most of the unexplained hearing-loss cases is that protein building in the cochlea during development goes awry. The cochlea has the all-important job of transforming mechanical energy in the form of sound waves into electrical signals that run along auditory nerves to the brain.
For many people with hearing challenges, trying to follow a conversation in a crowded restaurant or other noisy venue is a major struggle, even with hearing aids. Now researchers reporting in Current Biology on Oct. 19 have some good news: time spent playing a specially designed, brain-training audiogame could help.
Researchers have developed a system that can display the movements of our own tongues in real time. These movements are processed by a machine learning algorithm that controls an 'articulatory talking head.' This avatar shows the tongue, palate and teeth, which are usually hidden inside the vocal tract. This "visual biofeedback" system, which ought to be easier to understand and therefore should produce better correction of pronunciation, could be used for speech therapy.
Fifty-two previously unidentified genes that are critical for hearing have been found by testing over 3,000 mouse genes. The newly discovered genes will provide insights into the causes of hearing loss in humans, say scientists from Medical Research Council Harwell, who led the analysis by the International Mouse Phenotyping Consortium. The study, published in Nature Communications, tested 3,006 strains of 'knock-out' mice for signs of hearing loss.