The long-term objective of Professor Mhatre's laboratory is to apply adult stem cells as therapeutic vectors for treating hearing loss resulting from degeneration of the cochlear sensory hair cells and/or the primary auditory neurons. The stem cells used in these studies carry a marker gene for unambiguous and rapid identification in the implanted cochlea. Both in vitro and in vivo models are used to assess and identify the induction signals provided by specific growth factors and microenvironments, specific cells and tissues, in effecting differentiation and targeting of the stem cells in the implanted cochlea. Structural and functional integration of the implanted stem cells is assessed through histopathological and auditory testing of the implanted cochlea, treated with ototoxins to induce sensory cell degeneration and hearing loss.
Li Y, Friedmann DR, Mhatre AN, Lalwani AK. MYH9-siRNA and MYH9 mutant alleles: expression in cultured cell lines and their effects upon cell structure and function. Cell Motil Cytoskeleton. 2008 May;65(5):393-405.
Lalwani AK, Atkin G, Li Y, Lee JY, Hillman DE, Mhatre AN. Localization in stereocilia, plasma membrane, and mitochondria suggests diverse roles for NMHC-IIa within cochlear hair cells. Brain Res. 2008 Mar 4;1197:13-22. Epub 2008 Jan 3.
Li Y, Lalwani AK, Mhatre AN. Alternative splice variants of MYH9.
DNA Cell Biol. 2008 Mar;27(3):117-25.