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Transl Res. 2011 Jul;158(1):54-70. doi: 10.1016/j.trsl.2011.02.003. Epub 2011 Mar 9.

Nutrient plasma levels achieved during treatment that reduces noise-induced hearing loss.

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Department of Speech, Language, and Hearing Sciences, University of Florida, Gainesville, FL 32610, USA.


Hearing loss encompasses both temporary and permanent deficits. If temporary threshold shift (TTS) and permanent threshold shift (PTS) share common pathological mechanisms, then agents that reduce PTS also should reduce TTS. Several antioxidant agents have reduced PTS in rodent models; however, reductions in TTS have been inconsistent. This study first determined whether dietary antioxidants (beta-carotene and vitamins C and E) delivered in combination with magnesium (Mg) reliably increase plasma concentrations of the active agents. Then, additional manipulations tested the hypothesis that these nutrients reduce acute TTS insult in the first 24 h after loud sound as well as longer lasting changes in hearing measured up to 7 days postnoise. Saline or nutrients were administered to guinea pigs prior to and after noise exposure. Sound-evoked electrophysiological responses were measured before noise, with tests repeated 1-h postnoise, as well as 1-day, 3-days, 5-days, and 7-days postnoise. All subjects showed significant functional recovery; subjects treated with nutrients recovered more rapidly and had better hearing outcomes at early postnoise times as well as the final test time. Thus, this combination of nutrients, which produced significant increases in plasma concentrations of vitamins C and E and Mg, effectively reduced hearing loss at multiple postnoise times. These data suggest that free radical formation contributes to TTS as well as PTS insults and suggest a potential opportunity to prevent TTS in human populations.

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