Pathology and physiology of auditory neuropathy with a novel mutation in the MPZ gene (Tyr145→Ser)

Arnold Starr, Henry J. Michalewski, Fan Gang Zeng, Sharon Fujikawa-Brooks, Fred Linthicum, Chong S. Kim, Deidre Winnier, Bronya Keats

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

134 Scopus citations


We studied a family with hereditary sensory motor neuropathy and deafness accompanying a missense mutation in the MPZ gene. Pathological examination of the cochlea in one of the family members revealed marked loss of auditory ganglion cells and central and peripheral auditory nerve fibres within the cochlea. The inner hair cells were of normal number with preserved morphology. The outer hair cells were normal in number except for a 30% reduction in just the apical turn. Examination of the sural nerve and the auditory nerve adjacent to the brainstem showed marked loss of fibres with evidence of incomplete remyelination of some of the remaining fibres. Studies of auditory function in surviving family members using electrophysiological and psychoacoustic methods provided evidence that the hearing deficits in this form of auditory neuropathy were probably related to a decrease of auditory nerve input accompanying axonal disease. Altered synchrony of discharge of the remaining fibres was a possible additional contributing factor.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1604-1619
Number of pages16
Issue number7
StatePublished - Jul 1 2003
Externally publishedYes


  • Charcot-Marie-Tooth (CMT)
  • Deafness
  • N100
  • Pathophysiology
  • Psychoacoustics

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Neurology


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