WEBINAR ANNOUNCEMENT - “Genetics and New Developments in Screening and Testing for Hearing Loss”

Posted on May 09, 2023

Webinar Announcement

Genetics and New Developments in Screening and Testing for Hearing Loss
May 18, 2023
2:30 p.m. - 3:30 p.m. ET

On May 18th, NCHAM will be hosting the webinar: “Genetics and New Developments in Screening and Testing for Hearing Loss”

Webinar Description

Seismic changes are happening in the field of genetics that are going to be affecting many people. Over the past 30 plus years significant progress has been made in the provision of services leading to the early identification of hearing loss. Early identification allows for a rapid response to limit, if not prevent altogether, any periods of time where a child does not have access to language. It is important to recognize that from a medical perspective, hearing loss is a symptom on an underlying alteration in the peripheral auditory system and sometimes the central auditory system; a symptom of an underlying pathogenic mechanism. Hence, in addition to identifying the presence of a hearing loss, clinical treatment can be informed by knowing what has caused the hearing loss. Genetic testing provides one very valuable way to do this. In some cases, for example, a child may be found to have a condition typically associated with a progressive hearing loss. This additional genetic diagnosis can informs the need for ongoing testing and refines other types of intervention that may be considered. The study of genetic linkages to hearing loss has now lead to the availability of gene therapy as a mean for treating hearing loss. And the potential of this is only starting to become understood.

In this presentation, four different patients will be discussed to illustrate how a genetic diagnosis has altered their clinical care and helped guide the clinicians who care for them.

Key Topics

Part 1: Genetic Testing

What is genetic testing for hearing loss?
Why is genetic testing performed?
Who should receive this testing?
How does a clinician order this testing?

Part 2. Genetic Newborn Hearing Screening

What is the rationale for adding a genetic portion to the existing newborn hearing screening protocol?

Part 3 Gene Therapy for Hearing Loss

What are the new development in gene therapy for hearing loss and what is on the horizon?

Webinar Presenter
Eliot Shearer, MD, PhD

Dr. Eliot Shearer is a pediatric otolaryngologist at Boston Children’s Hospital (BCH), where he cares for children with a wide range of ear, nose, and throat disorders. He has a special interest in the surgical management of pediatric ear disorders, including hearing loss, ossicular abnormalities, cholesteatoma, bone anchored hearing aids, and cochlear implantation.

Dr. Shearer is currently a member of the Cochlear Implant Program at BCH and is the Principal Investigator of the Translational Hearing Genomics Lab. His laboratory studies the genetics of hearing loss and other ear, nose, and throat disorders. He is internationally recognized for his work in developing a new genetic testing platform for the diagnosis of hearing loss and has written many research articles and several book chapters on the subject. Dr. Shearer also studies ways to improve newborn hearing screen tests using new technologies and ways to improve outcomes for children with cochlear implants.

Dr. Shearer completed his otolaryngology residency training at the University of Iowa Hospitals & Clinics. He completed a fellowship in Pediatric Otolaryngology at BCH and Harvard Medical School.
This webinar platform will be via a Zoom link. Once you have registered for the webinar, a Zoom link will be emailed to you. Please make sure the Zoom account you will be using is up to date. More information on how to update your account can be found here: Updating Zoom

This webinar will be recorded and posted online at www.infanthearing.org about a week after the webinar.

Live captioning and ASL interpreting will be provided.

There are no CEU’s offered for the webinar.

For technical assistance during the webinar, please contact Gunnar Thurman.

This webinar is being provided by the National Center for Hearing Assessment and Management at Utah State University. This work is funded in part by a cooperative agreement (U52MC04391) from the Maternal and Child Health Bureau (MCHB) of the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) at the United States Department of Health and Human Services.

The National Center for Hearing Assessment and Management (NCHAM) at Utah State University (USU) is committed to promoting respectful dialogue about improving Early Hearing Detection and Intervention (EHDI) programs. The content, views, or opinions expressed in the referenced materials are those of the authors or presenters. No endorsement by NCHAM, USU, or its funders is implied or expressed.