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Hidden hearing loss selectively impairs neural adaptation to loud sound environments

Bakay, WMH; Anderson, LA; Garcia-Lazaro, JA; McAlpine, D; Schaette, R; (2018) Hidden hearing loss selectively impairs neural adaptation to loud sound environments. Nature Communications , 9 , Article 4298. 10.1038/s41467-018-06777-y. Green open access

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Abstract

Exposure to even a single episode of loud noise can damage synapses between cochlear hair cells and auditory nerve fibres, causing hidden hearing loss (HHL) that is not detected by audiometry. Here we investigate the effects of noise-induced HHL on functional hearing by measuring the ability of neurons in the auditory midbrain of mice to adapt to sound environments containing quiet and loud periods. Neurons from noise-exposed mice show less capacity for adaptation to loud environments, convey less information about sound intensity in those environments, and adaptation to the longer-term statistical structure of fluctuating sound environments is impaired. Adaptation comprises a cascade of both threshold and gain adaptation. Although noise exposure only impairs threshold adaptation directly, the preserved function of gain adaptation surprisingly aggravates coding deficits for loud environments. These deficits might help to understand why many individuals with seemingly normal hearing struggle to follow a conversation in background noise.

Type: Article
Title: Hidden hearing loss selectively impairs neural adaptation to loud sound environments
Location: England
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1038/s41467-018-06777-y
Publisher version: https://doi.org/10.1038/s41467-018-06777-y
Language: English
Additional information: Open Access: This article is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, which permits use, sharing, adaptation, distribution and reproduction in any medium or format, as long as you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons license, and indicate if changes were made. The images or other third party material in this article are included in the article’s Creative Commons license, unless indicated otherwise in a credit line to the material. If material is not included in the article’s Creative Commons license and your intended use is not permitted by statutory regulation or exceeds the permitted use, you will need to obtain permission directly from the copyright holder. To view a copy of this license, visit http://creativecommons.org/ licenses/by/4.0/.
Keywords: Cochlea, Experimental models of disease, Midbrain, Sensory processing
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences > The Ear Institute
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10059553
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