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Rogaine for Your Ears

A couple of years ago, researchers at Massachusetts Eye and Ear Infirmary discovered that an experimental drug could regenerate hair cells in the inner ear. This has been hailed as great news to all that suffer from hearing loss due to loud noise exposure. Maybe you won’t have to pay for that arena rock phase after all, right? Well… not so fast there, Gene Simmons! The research was performed on mice and so far, while promising, has not done anything more than create a new revenue stream for the researchers. Pharmaceutical giant Eli Lilly is bankrolling further research which hopefully will show that the drug also will work on humans. The researchers also hope to be able to administer the drug in a focused, specific way so that the hair cells are affected positively, while not affecting other cells at the same time negatively. And we still don’t know if the regenerated cells are even functional for hearing. For the millions running around making their significant others pay for the time they spent at concert halls by asking, “What?” constantly this is still cause for hope that help may be available soon. After all, who doesn’t want to be ready when Journey gets back together?

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