For me, this is a profound moment. It will be even more profound if many people can benefit from it.
Some of you may know that I suffer about an 85% hearing loss, and even with powerful hearing aids I still have very poor hearing which has gotten almost non-functional over the years. It makes me a social hermit since I don’t function well in public. It is part of the reason I became a broadcaster, because I had such a terrible time in college lectures and with language requirements in the school of science. In broadcasting, I only had to talk to the camera or to the microphone. It was a job that was not only a dream come true, it brought me out of my shell that many hearing impaired people live in due to the social isolation it brings.
I started losing my hearing as a child due to being treated with the antibiotic Tetracycline, which is known to be ototoxic. By the time I was 10, I needed hearing aids, but fortunately, I had formed my primary speech skills. Many other people who lose hearing as children aren’t so lucky as I and have speech problems as a result.
I knew this day would come, I predicted that gene therapy to treat cochlear nerve deafness would be coming over 10 years ago. I can only hope I can be able to take advantage of it someday. I won’t hide my own selfishness, I want to be one of those people.
Deaf people get gene tweak to restore natural hearing
People who have lost their hearing will be injected with a harmless virus carrying a gene that should trigger the regrowth of their ears’ sensory receptors
IN TWO months’ time, a group of profoundly deaf people could be able to hear again, thanks to the world’s first gene therapy trial for deafness.
The volunteers, who lost their hearing through damage or disease, will get an injection of a harmless virus containing a gene that should trigger the regrowth of the sensory receptors in the ear.