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Aging nation faces hearing-loss crisisAging nation faces hearing-loss crisis

first_imgStefan Heller of Stanford University said research in restoring damaged hearing cells “is very much at the beginning and it’s still a long, long road.” Inner and outer hair cells in the ear pick up sound vibrations and send them to the brain. Damage to outer cells causes hearing impairment, which can be helped by hearing aides, he said. Damage to the inner cells cannot be repaired and causes deafness. Heller said ear stem cells have been isolated in laboratory work and grown into cells that resembled hair cells. “They’re not perfect,” he said. When placed in the ear of chicken embryos, most of the cells died. A few survived and were implanted into the inner ear. The next step, he said, is to try the experiment in mice. Gene therapy is being tested in an effort to produce more hair cells in the ear. The result so far has been a type of hybrid cells and researchers are unsure whether they can get these cells to survive. SAN FRANCISCO – An aging U.S. population faces a looming crisis in hearing loss, researchers said Saturday. Some research holds promise, but much is in the early stages. By 2050, there could be as many as 50 million people in the United States with impaired hearing, Steven Greenberg of Silicon Speech in Santa Venetia, Calif., told the annual meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science. Hearing loss results in social and psychological isolation, “which makes their life hell,” Greenberg said. Thanks to loud music and a generally noisy environment, young people have a rate of impaired hearing 21/2 times that of their parents and grandparents, he said. Heller said scientists in Japan are experimenting with drugs that seem to help spur the growth of hearing cells in young mice. The results in older mice are far less promising. There seems to be something not yet understood that prevents new cell development in the inner ear. This is an area where cancer is not known to occur, he said, and an indication that something prevents cell development. 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!last_img read more


first_imgTHE funeral arrangements have been announced for Mark Farren.The 33-year-old’s remains will leave his home at Mill Glen in Moville at 10.20 am this Friday for 11 am Requiem Mass at St Mary’s church in Ballybrack.He will be laid to rest in the adjoining cemetery. Hundreds of people, many fans and players are expected to attend his funeral as a mark of respect for the hot shot striker who has been described today as a “legend and a good man”.A huge fundraising campaign was launched to raise the money needed to send Mark for specialist treatment in Mexico in a bid to beat his brain tumour.However, despite this, Mark, who was from Greencastle, passed away this morning.ARRANGEMENTS ANNOUNCED FOR FUNERAL OF MARK FARREN was last modified: February 3rd, 2016 by John2Share this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window) Tags:ARRANGEMENTS ANNOUNCED FOR FUNERAL OF MARK FARRENlast_img read more

Go back to the enewsletter Boutique travel specialGo back to the enewsletter Boutique travel special

first_imgGo back to the enewsletterBoutique travel specialist, Italian Villa Vacations, has released a series of seven-night packages to showcase some of Italy’s most popular tourist hot spots including Umbria, Tuscany and the Lakes district. Designed for small groups of up to 12 guests, the packages are centred around stays at hand-picked luxury villas in each region and include daily sightseeing and activities, fine dining, private wine tastings and more.The concept of being based in one location for a week offers travellers a less stressful, more in-depth experience at a relaxed pace compared to traditional tour operators, which tend to have early starts, rush through destinations and the inconvenience of moving hotels, says Italian Villa Vacations’ owner/operator, Jane Black.Last year, Black created a new business arm, Italy Culture Tours, in partnership with her Aunty and fellow “Italophile”, Jane Finemore. A one-time exchange student, Black lives and breathes Italy, and turned that passion into a travel business that is thriving. Having curated week-long villa rentals and activities for FIT clients on a daily basis for the past 12 years, Black noticed a gap in the market for small group villa vacations, where like-minded travellers or friends could enjoy the comforts of villa life.Italy Culture Trails’ maiden package is The Umbria Chapter itinerary utilising the family-run Villa Bellissima, a newly restored 300-year-old farmhouse located in a picturesque valley between Rome and Florence. Villa Bellissima has six king bedrooms, each with a fireplace and ensuite, an infinity-edge pool, gym and multiple indoor and outdoor living spaces.“It becomes their home away from home for guests,” Black told LATTE.“Feedback from my clients is that moving from one hotel to another is stressful and can be exhausting. That’s not a holiday. At Villa Bellissima, guests become familiar with the town, the villa, its grounds and the family. This is an immersive experience, but guests aren’t sitting still. They’ll explore three different regions over the week – Umbria, Tuscany and Lazio – but there’s no hassle of having to change beds every night,” Black said.Villa BellissimaThe itinerary offers a mix of tours such as a day trips to Orvieto where guests enjoy lunch in an ancient grotto and visit an archaeological dig site that’s closed to the general public. Other days guests explore Assisi, Montepulciano, Siena and Civita di Bagnoregio. Some days focus on food and wine experiences, including a private Michelin-starred tasting lunch at Relais & Chateaux’ Il Falconiere in Cortona, while others are centred around culture and history.Days trips are escorted by driver/guides in two Mercedes-Benz vans, ensuring comfort and access to locations unattainable by touring coaches.Villa BellissimaThe itinerary offers plenty of flexibility and free-time, should guests wish to take a break from activities. One busy day of exploring is generally followed by another at a more relaxed pace. All meals are included, with breakfast at Villa Bellissima every day and lunch or dinner either off-site or back at the villa. Guests can also get as hands-on as they like, helping the resident cook prepare meals if they wish and going to the market to select produce.The escorted Umbria Chapter operates during the shoulder season, outside of the summer peak when the weather is more comfortable, the Italian landscapes not so dry and there are fewer crowds, says Black. Villa BellissimaThe seven-night package is $6,000 per person, twin-share, including return transfers from Rome, Florence and nearby locations. While the date for the first itinerary is set for 26 September 2020, Italy Culture Trails has the flexibility to offer the same or similar package to small groups at any time of year, subject to availability. Packages can be tailored to include cooking classes, vineyard visits, private boats, string quartets and more.Itineraries specific to Tuscany, staying at La Novellina, the Lakes, based at Villa Filanda (a former silk-spinning mill, and Mantova, utilising Palazzo Castiglioni, have already been earmarked for 2021.Italy Culture Trails’ existing B2C partners include agents at Travel Associates, MTA – Mobile Travel Agents, TravelManagers, Savenio, Mary Rossi Travel and a collection of independent agencies.For more information on The Umbria Chapter, contact Jane Black on email [email protected] italyculturetrails.com.au and italianvillvacations.com.auGo back to the enewsletterlast_img read more