Comparison of Neurogenesis in the Dentate Gyrus Between the Adult and Aged Gerbil Following Transient Global Cerebral Ischemia
One of the problems when providing prelingually deafened children with a cochlear implant is to find the optimal moment for the implantation in order to make optimal use of the sensitive phase in the maturation of the auditory system and to achieve the maximum improvement of hearing. Ontogenetic questions can be investigated in animal experiments under controlled conditions. In the present study an animal model (gerbil, Meriones unguiculatus) was established to simulate the situation of prelingually deafened children and to examine the influence of chronic electrostimulation on the development of the auditory pathway. We used species specific sounds for chronic stimulation to simulate significance of human language in our animal modell. A daily two-hour electrostimulation during the ontogenesis of early deafened animals lead to a partial compensation of the functional degeneration of the auditory pathway, which can be observed in totally deafened animals. This animal model provides an elaborate test design which can be used in CI research for the investigation of numerous problems.