Navigation Links
Scientists search for brain center responsible for tinnitus
Date:10/5/2007

BUFFALO, N.Y. -- For the more than 50 million Americans who experience the phantom sounds of tinnitus -- ringing in the ears that can range from annoying to debilitating -- certain well-trained rats may be their best hope for finding relief.

Researchers at the University at Buffalo have studied the condition for more than 10 years and have developed these animal models, which can tell the researchers if they are experiencing tinnitus.

These scientists now have received a $2.9 million five-year grant from the National Institutes of Health to study the brain signals responsible for creating the phantom sounds, using the animal models, and to test potential therapies to quiet the noise.

The research will take place at the Center for Hearing and Deafness, part of the Department of Communicative Disorders and Sciences in the universitys College of Arts and Sciences. Richard Salvi, Ph.D., director of the center, is principal investigator. Scientists from UBs Department of Nuclear Medicine and from Roswell Park Cancer Institute in Buffalo are major collaborators on portions of the project.

Tinnitus is caused by continued exposure to loud noise, by normal aging and, to a much lesser extent, as a side effect of taking certain anti-cancer drugs. It is a major concern in the military: 30 percent of Iraq and Afghanistan combat veterans suffer from the condition.

For many years it was thought that the buzzing or ringing sounds heard by people with tinnitus originated in the ear, Salvi said. But by using positron emission tomography [known as PET scanning] to view the brain activity of people with tinnitus at UB, weve been able to show that these phantom auditory sensations originated somewhere in brain, not in the ear. That changed the whole research approach.

Salvi and colleagues discovered that when the brains auditory cortex begins receiving diminished neural signals from the cochlea, the hearing organ, due to injury or age, the auditory cortex turns up the volume, increasing weak neural signals from the cochlea. Increasing the volume of these weak signals may be experienced as the buzzing, ringing, or hissing characteristic of tinnitus. Currently there is no drug or treatment that can abolish these phantom sounds.

Over the past decade, Salvis team has developed the animal models, allowing the researchers to explore the neurophysiological and biological mechanisms associated with tinnitus, the major focus of this new study. Ed Lobarinas, Ph.D., and Wei Sun, Ph.D., in the Department of Communicative Disorders and Sciences, developed the models.

One of the major goals of the project is to try to identify the neural signature of tinnitus -- what aberrant pattern of neural activity in the auditory cortex is associated with the onset of tinnitus. In another study phase, the researchers will assess neural activity throughout the entire brain using a radioactive tracer, fluorodeoxyglucose (FDG), which is taken up preferentially into regions of the brain that are highly active metabolically.

The third phase of the study involves the use of potential therapeutic drugs to suppress salicylate- or noise-induced tinnitus. In early studies, the researchers have been able to modulate some ion channels with one unique compound, and have been able to completely eliminate aspirin-induced tinnitus using the highest doses of the compound. This phase involves collaboration with scientists at NeuroSearch Pharmaceuticals in Denmark.


'/>"/>

Contact: Lois Baker
ljbaker@buffalo.edu
716-645-5000 x1417
University at Buffalo
Source:Eurekalert

Related medicine news :

1. Nobel Prize for Medicine shared by Three scientists
2. Scientists plan human cloning clinic in the United States
3. Scientists crack mechanism of Leptin-Obesity Hormone
4. Scientists use plant hormones to fight cancer
5. American scientists alter gene makeup of babies
6. Expose on eating disorders!! Scientists trace “brain’s eating control center pathway”
7. Scientists found ancient Human Germ Killer
8. Scientists locate key hormone involved in appetite control
9. Scientists open the book of life
10. Electronic nose by Italian scientists
11. Scientists review SARS
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:6/26/2016)... ... June 27, 2016 , ... Quality metrics are proliferating in cancer care, and ... in the eye of the beholder, according to experts who offered insights and commentary ... of Managed Care. For the full issue, click here . , For the ...
(Date:6/26/2016)... ... June 26, 2016 , ... Many women are ... with endometriosis. These women need a treatment plan to not only alleviate symptoms ... can help for preservation of fertility and ultimately achieving a pregnancy. The specialists ...
(Date:6/25/2016)... ... June 25, 2016 , ... First Choice Emergency Room , the largest ... as the Medical Director of its new Mesquite-Samuell Farm facility. , “We are ... Mesquite location,” said Dr. James M. Muzzarelli, Executive Medical Director of First Choice Emergency ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... June 24, 2016 , ... A recent article published ... unfamiliar with. The article goes on to state that individuals are now more comfortable ... less common operations such as calf and cheek reduction. The Los Angeles area medical ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... June 24, 2016 , ... Global law firm Greenberg Traurig, P.A. announced that ... chosen by their peers for this recognition are considered among the top 2 percent ... special honors as members of this year’s Legal Elite Hall of Fame: Miami ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:6/24/2016)... 24, 2016  Arkis BioSciences, a leading innovator ... more durable cerebrospinal fluid treatments, today announced it ... funding is led by Innova Memphis, followed by ... private investors.  Arkis, new financing will accelerate the ... market release of its in-licensed Endexo® technology. ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... DUBLIN , June 23, 2016 ... "Dialysis Devices Global Market - Forecast to 2022" report ... is the treatment method for the patients with kidney failure, ... and excess fluid from the patient,s blood and thus the ... sodium, potassium and chloride in balance. Increasing ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... 23, 2016 Research and Markets ... Market by Type (Organic Chemical (Sugar, Petrochemical, Glycerin), Inorganic ... Coating, Parenteral) - Global Forecast to 2021" report ... The global pharmaceutical excipients market is projected to ... of 6.1% in the forecast period 2016 to 2021. ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: