Rick Friedman, MD, PhD, professor of Otolaryngology, and John Niparko, MD, chair of the USC Tina and Rick Caruso Department of Otolaryngology – Head and Neck Surgery, attended the Collegium Oto-rhino-laryngologicum Amicitiae Sacrum (CORLAS) meeting in San Francisco, CA August 23-26, 2015.

The Collegium Oto-rhino-laryngologicum Amicitiae Sacrum is an international organization of otorhinolaryngologists and clinician-scientists that was established in 1926. CORLAS was founded to establish a forum that brings together world leaders in otorhinolaryngology to discuss current clinical problems, propose potential solutions and to share advancements in the field at an international level. The CORLAS meeting is unique in that it brings together the largest concentration of the world’s thought leaders within the specialty into one intimate environment. With respect to the host country for the yearly meeting, the U.S. has held this role only four times since 1926.

Friedman, who is also division director of otology, neurotology & skull base surgery, presented “Genome-Wide Association Study Identifies Nox3 as a Critical Gene for Susceptibility to Noise-Induced Hearing Loss” at the meeting. This is significant as Friedman’s lab has identified a novel gene for NIHL susceptibility.

“Understanding the biological processes that affect susceptibility to hearing loss due to loud noise exposure is an important factor in reducing the risk,” said Dr. Friedman.

In the United States, approximately 10 percent of the population is exposed daily to hazardous levels of noise in the workplace. Twin studies estimate heritability for noise-induced hearing loss (NIHL) of approximately 36 percent, and strain specific variation in sensitivity has been demonstrated in mice. Using 64 of the 100 strains of mice in the Hybrid Mouse Diversity Panel, Dr. Friedman’s successfully increased the statistical power of its investigation, leading to the first publishedvGWAS for noise-induced hearing loss in mice. The study, “Genome-wide association study identifies Nox3 as a critical gene for susceptibility to noise-induced hearing loss,” was published in the April 16 edition of PLOS Genetics.

Read more about the study