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RNID Funds Research for a Sound Future
These projects are aimed at:
- Using deaf children's visual skills to promote mathematics learning. The average deaf 16 to 17 year old has the mathematical skills of a 10 to 12 year old. Research will be aimed at developing computer-based activities to improve the way maths is taught to deaf children.
- Understanding how loud noise causes hearing loss. It is not known whether inflammation in the cochlear damages hearing or whether this is part of a healing process. Understanding this will help scientists develop treatments protect hearing.
- Identifying genes that cause age-related hearing loss. If scientists can identify what genes cause age-related hearing loss, they could develop tests to warn people at risk to make life-style changes to protect their hearing.
- Understanding the brain activity involved in tinnitus. Tinnitus is a ‘ringing' in the ears which is not heard by anyone else. Past research shows that damage to the ear can result in changes in parts of the brain which processes auditory signals and may lead to abnormal brain-cell activity. Once this is understood, scientists could develop a treatment to ‘switch off' the ringing.
RNID is also increasing its funding in training PhD students, in an effort to increase the number of scientists trained in auditory research. Two new PhD grants have been awarded this year.
Launched in 1999, RNID has already funded over 24 projects to give scientists a better understanding of hearing loss and tinnitus, which could result in new treatments or preventative measures. The projects are chosen for their novelty, likely benefits, cost effectiveness and scientific quality.
- For more information on RNID biomedical research, log onto www.rnid.org.uk/research
- The homepage of RNID can be found at www.rnid.org.uk