Stem Cells: A New Hope for Hearing Loss Therapy

  • Yang Qiu
  • Jianhua QiuEmail author
Part of the Advances in Experimental Medicine and Biology book series (AEMB, volume 1130)


Permanent hearing loss was considered which cannot be cured since cochlear hair cells and primary afferent neurons cannot be regenerated. In recent years, due to the in-depth study of stem cell and its therapeutic potential, regenerating auditory sensory cells is made possible. By using two strategies of endogenous stem cell activation and exogenous stem cell transplantation, researchers hope to find methods to restore hearing function. However, there are complex factors that need to be considered in the in vivo application of stem cell therapy, such as stem cell-type choice, signaling pathway regulations, transplantation approaches, internal environment of the cochlea, and external stimulation. After years of investigations, some theoretic progress has been made in the treatment of hearing loss using stem cells, but there are also many problems which limited its application that need to be solved. Understanding the future perspective of stem cell therapy in hearing loss, solving the encountered problems, and promoting its development are the common goals of audiological researchers. In this review, we present critical experimental findings of stem cell therapy on treatment of hearing loss and intend to bring hope to researchers and patients.


Hearing loss Stem cells Cell transplantation Hair cell regeneration 


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© Springer Nature Singapore Pte Ltd. 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Otolaryngology Head and Neck Surgery, Xijing HospitalAir Force Military Medical UniversityXi’an, ShaanxiPeople’s Republic of China
  2. 2.Institutes of Biomedical SciencesFudan UniversityShanghaiPeople’s Republic of China
  3. 3.ENT Institute and Otorhinolaryngology Department, Affiliated Eye and ENT Hospital, State Key Laboratory of Medical NeurobiologyFudan UniversityShanghaiPeople’s Republic of China

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