NEW ORLEANS (AP) – A researcher in New Orleans has a five-year, $1.8 million grant to study how the brain processes sound.
Tulane University assistant professor Hai Huang (HY HWONG) says he hopes his research in mice will improve understanding of healthy hearing and lay the groundwork for treating disorders. Hearing loss affects about 40 million Americans.
Tulane says The National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders is providing the grant to study how brain chemicals transfer sound signals between nerve cells in both normal and hearing-impaired mice.
Most such studies have looked at the receiving end of the junctions called synapses, because the sending side is generally too small to make recordings.
However, the hearing system includes a large synapse called the calyx of held. Researchers can record its transmissions in mice.