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Progressive hearing loss in vitamin A-deficient mice which may be protected by the activation of cochlear melanocyte.

A new interesting article has been published in Sci Rep. 2018 Nov 6;8(1):16415. doi: 10.1038/s41598-018-34653-8. and titled:

Progressive hearing loss in vitamin A-deficient mice which may be protected by the activation of cochlear melanocyte.

Authors of this article are:

Gi M, Shim DB, Wu L, Bok J, Song MH, Choi JY.

A summary of the article is shown below:

Vitamin A deficiency (VAD) produces various pathologic phenotypes in humans and animals. However, evidence regarding the effect of VAD on hearing function has been inconsistent. In this study, we evaluated the effect of VAD on hearing function in two mouse models of VAD. Hearing ability was evaluated on the basis of auditory brainstem response from 3 to 20 weeks after birth in C57BL/6 (pigmented) and imprinting control region (albino) mice. The two mice strains were divided into the VAD (purified vitamin A-free diet from 7 days after pregnancy) and control (normal diet) groups. Albino VAD mice exhibited hearing loss after 6 weeks and became deaf at 18 weeks. Histological findings revealed degenerative changes in outer hair cells and neuronal loss in the spiral ganglion in albino VAD mice. In contrast, pigmented VAD mice, except those with middle-ear infection, showed no significant hearing loss. Interestingly, pigmented VAD mice exhibited melanocyte activation in the stria vascularis and upregulation of tyrosinase. Recovery of hearing after noise exposure was poorer in pigmented VAD mice than in control mice. In conclusion, complete VAD might be related to age-related or noise-induced hearing loss in mice, protection against which might involve melanocyte activation.

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