According to the World Health Organization, hearing loss is the number one sensory disability in the world, with 12% of Americans suffering from hearing impairment. Sensorineural hearing loss, caused by the loss of sensory hair cells in the cochlea, is the most common type and is normally irreversible.
Research from Massachusetts Eye and Ear and Harvard Medical School reveals that hair can be regrown in an adult mammalian ear, resulting in partial recovery of hearing in damaged by noise trauma (in mouse ears). This finding brings hope for future application of reversing deafness in humans.
Treatment, through auditory hair cell replacement, holds great promise. Read more about the study.