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The retinoblastoma protein pRb is required for cell-cycle exit of embryonic mammalian hair cells but not for their early differentiation. However, its role in postnatal hair cells is unknown. To study the function of pRb in mature animals, we created a new conditional mouse model, with the Rb gene deleted primarily in the inner ear. Progeny survive up to 6(More)
The cell types of the inner ear originate from the otic placode, a thickened layer of ectoderm adjacent to the developing hindbrain. The placode invaginates and forms the otic pit, which pinches off as a small vesicle called the otocyst. Presumptive cochleovestibular neurons delaminate from the anterior ventral part of the otocyst and form the(More)
Age-related hearing loss and noise-induced hearing loss are major causes of human morbidity. Here we used genetics and functional studies to show that a shared cause of these disorders may be loss of function of the ATP-gated P2X(2) receptor (ligand-gated ion channel, purinergic receptor 2) that is expressed in sensory and supporting cells of the cochlea.(More)
Isl1 is a LIM-homeodomain transcription factor that is critical in the development and differentiation of multiple tissues. In the mouse inner ear, Isl1 is expressed in the prosensory region of otocyst, in young hair cells and supporting cells, and is no longer expressed in postnatal auditory hair cells. To evaluate how continuous Isl1 expression in(More)
BACKGROUND Metabolic risk factors and abnormalities such as obesity and hypertension are rapidly rising among the Chinese population following China's tremendous economic growth and widespread westernization of lifestyle in recent decades. Limited information is available about the current burden of metabolic syndrome (MetS) in China. METHODS We analyzed(More)
Hair cells of the inner ear are mechanoreceptors for hearing and balance, and proteins highly enriched in hair cells may have specific roles in the development and maintenance of the mechanotransduction apparatus. We identified XIRP2/mXinβ as an enriched protein likely to be essential for hair cells. We found that different isoforms of this protein are(More)
Genes involved in the hearing process have been identified through both positional cloning efforts following genetic linkage studies of families with heritable deafness and by candidate gene approaches based on known functional properties or inner ear expression. The latter method of gene discovery may employ a tissue- or organ-specific approach. Through(More)
Mutations in phosphoribosyl pyrophosphate synthetase 1 (PRPS1) are associated with a spectrum of non-syndromic to syndromic hearing loss. PRPS1 transcript levels have been shown to be regulated by the microRNA-376 genes. The long primary RNA transcript of the miR-376 RNA cluster members undergo extensive and simultaneous A → I editing at one or both of two(More)