UCL Ear Institute


New genes identified in hearing loss, providing treatment hope

27 September 2019

Sally Dawson and Helena Wells have identified 44 genes linked to age-related hearing loss, giving a much clearer understanding of how the condition develops, in a joint UCL and King’s College London study.

Image of male cupping hand around ear to improve amplification

In the study, published today in The American Journal of Human Genetics, researchers analysed the genetic data from over 250,000 participants of the UK Biobank aged 40-69 years to see which genes were associated with people who had reported having or not having hearing problems on questionnaire. 44 genes were identified to be linked with hearing loss.

Co-lead author Dr Sally Dawson (UCL Ear Institute) said: "Before our study, only five genes had been identified as predictors of age-related hearing loss, so our findings herald a nine-fold increase in independent genetic markers.

Read the rest of the feature on the UCL News page.