My research program focuses on improving our understand of how inflammation reaches the inner ear; how inflammatory cells function when they are activated in the ear and how this cell population aids or hampers the repair process after cochlear injury. There are numerous processes that induce cochlear inflammation; ranging from meningitis to cochlear surgery. My long term goals are to use improved knowledge of inflammation to devise targeted therapies for progressive sensorineural hearing loss and to identify methods of preserving residual hearing in individuals who might undergo cochlear implantation. By improving our understanding of inflammation and scar formation in the inner ear; I hope to provide more specific ways to support the survival of hearing cells early during degeneration before hearing loss becomes irreversible.
Pediatric hearing loss, cochlear implantation, chronic ear surgery, cholesteatoma, conductive hearing loss, aural atresia, BAHA, ear infections, speech disorders, velopharyngeal insufficiency, cleft palate, craniofacial disorders