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Hereditary deafness

Researchers at EARA member Radboud University Medical Centre, Netherlands, are developing a way to prevent sudden-onset deafness.

A hereditary gene mutation causes deterioration in the hearing of patients with the condition after around 40 years, due to a build-up of protein which disrupts the normal function within the inner ear.

The team found that by producing a ‘patch’, a small RNA sequence which targets the gene mutation, they could stop the faulty protein being produced in cells.

Their results will now be repeated in animal and human trials, with the hope of using it as a preventative treatment for patients with this mutation.

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