Exotic Micropumps and Gels Offer Hope for Hearing Disorders

(Scientific American) – Researchers at the Charles Stark Draper Laboratory in Cambridge, Mass., are now testing a tiny polymer matrix that can be loaded with chemical compounds used to treat inner-ear diseases. Whether blended with an existing but limited treatment such as the anesthetic Lidocaine or some as-yet-undiscovered drug, the polymer would be injected into the middle ear and remotely triggered to release its payload into the cochlea, the fluid-filled tubular organ in the inner ear that enables us to hear.

The views, opinions and positions expressed by these authors and blogs are theirs and do not necessarily represent that of the Bioethics Research Library and Kennedy Institute of Ethics or Georgetown University.