Researchers at Indiana University School of Medicine are several steps closer to the day when a profoundly deaf patients own bone marrow cells could be used to let him or her hear the world.
The IU group, led by Eri Hashino, Ph.D., was able to transform, in the laboratory, stem cells taken from adult bone marrow into cells with many of the characteristics of sensory nerve cells -- neurons -- found in the ear. The results suggest that these adult stem cells could be used to treat deaf patients in the future, said Dr. Hashino, an associate professor and Ruth C. Holton Scholar in the Department of Otolaryngology -- Head and Neck Surgery.
The cells used in the research are called marrow stromal cells -- a type of stem cell from which fat, bone and cartilage normally develop.
Eric Schoch | EurekAlert!
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