image credit: wayhomestudio / Freepik

Gene Therapy Brings Hearing to Kids With Congenital Deafness

January 25, 2024


Five of six Chinese children born deaf due to a rare genetic defect now have the ability to hear, thanks to an experimental gene therapy.

The therapy involved a hollowed-out virus loaded with a healthy version of the gene responsible for producing otoferlin, a protein necessary for the transmission of sound signals from the inner ear to the brain.

Doctors injected the virus into the inner ears of the children through a special surgical procedure, and five of the kids experienced hearing recovery within six months.