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Lilly gene therapy finding puts focus on hearing loss treatment pipeline

January 24, 2024

An 11-year-old boy who was born deaf can hear after receiving an experimental gene therapy, developer Eli Lilly reported on Tuesday.

The boy, identified as Aissam Dam by The New York Times, was the first participant treated in a small study Lilly is running to test the therapy, which is designed to correct a particular type of inherited hearing loss.

While only from one person, the result is a striking example of gene therapy’s potential. According to Lilly, Dam experienced restored hearing across sound frequencies within a month of treatment. In some frequencies, Dam’s hearing was within the normal range at day 30, Lilly said.

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