Reversibility of Aminoglycoside Ototoxicity
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Although gentamicin is a useful antibiotic, it results in permanent auditory and vestibular ototoxicity by damaging inner ear hair cells. A.aurita jellyfish ephyrae have functionally and morphologically similar hair cells to humans. They show permanent hair cell loss after exposure to 3.5 mM dose of gentamicin. Research objectives include determining whether lower doses of gentamicin (1mM) administered over a longer period of time can have therapeutic benefit free of permanent toxicity, while also evaluating the suitability of A.aurita jellyfish ephyrae to model aminoglycoside induced ototoxicity. Methods: 30 controls were exposed to artificial sea water (ASW) for one hour, and subsequent groups of 30 ephyrae were exposed to 1 mM gentamicin solutions for 1h, 24h, or 48h. Ephyrae were allowed to recover for one hour in ASW. The numbers of pulsations in one minute at baseline before exposure to gentamicin were then compared to pulsations/minute after transfer to ASW. Results: Ephyrae were paralyzed during 1mM gentamicin exposure, but jellyfish exposed to up to 48 hours of gentamicin recovered 92% of pulsatile function. Conclusions: 1 mM gentamicin is strong enough to paralyze ephyrae, but toxicity is, in fact, fully reversible. A. aurita is a positive animal model on which to study human ototoxicity