About this Research Topic
The immune system influences the ear and hearing both in physiological and pathological settings. Both the inner ear and the central auditory system host immune cell populations, which are involved in shaping nerve circuits and signals, and protecting the system from toxic, traumatic and infectious insults.
Moreover, upon damage or during systemic inflammation, non-resident immune cells can move to the peripheral and central auditory and vestibular systems. An immune-related etiopathogenesis has been suggested for Cogan syndrome, Susac syndrome, and at least for some forms of Menière's disease and sudden sensorineural hearing loss. Neuroimmune interactions in the inner ear display several peculiarities due to the unique anatomy of the labyrinth and its fluid regulation.
This Research Topic welcomes original research and reviews regarding cellular and molecular mechanisms of interaction between the immune, sensory and nervous systems in the inner ear in health (e.g. characterization of immune barriers or immune cell populations) and in pathological conditions. The aim of this Topic is to present comprehensive information covering clinical and basic research observations on the topic of immunity and inner ear. Clinical as well as ex vivo and in vitro research done with human and animal tissues and cells is welcome.
*picture legend: sagittal section of Iba1-labeled rat cochlea dissected from a 16 weeks-old female) clarified and immunostained with the iDISCO technique. Fluorescence imaging of the intact clarified temporal bone was performed with a light-sheet microscope, and 10 parasagittal, 1 µm optical sections were z-stacked in the present rendering. The labeling visualizes macrophages, which are clearly evident in most of the cochlear compartments.
Keywords: Hearing Loss, Blood-Brain Barrier, Blood-Labyrinth Barrier, Neuroimmune Interactions, Meniere
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