Audiology In Brief Humans may be born with a bias for listening to speech, but not necessarily human vocalizations. In a study by Athena Vouloumanos and colleagues in the March 24 issue of Child Development, 30 neonates and 16 3-month-old infants listened to nonsense speech and rhesus monkey vocalizations. The neonates showed ... News in Brief
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News in Brief  |   May 01, 2010
Audiology In Brief
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Hearing Disorders / News in Brief
News in Brief   |   May 01, 2010
Audiology In Brief
The ASHA Leader, May 2010, Vol. 15, 5. doi:10.1044/leader.NIB.15062010.5
The ASHA Leader, May 2010, Vol. 15, 5. doi:10.1044/leader.NIB.15062010.5
Listening Preference of Infants
Humans may be born with a bias for listening to speech, but not necessarily human vocalizations. In a study by Athena Vouloumanos and colleagues in the March 24 issue of Child Development, 30 neonates and 16 3-month-old infants listened to nonsense speech and rhesus monkey vocalizations. The neonates showed no preference for human speech over monkey vocalization, but preferred these sounds over synthetic sounds. The 3-month-olds preferred human speech. At birth, neonates initially prefer vocalizations from humans or monkeys; these listening preferences are sharpened over three months, yielding a species-specific preference for listening to speech.
Blood Samples Don’t Identify CMV
DNA analysis of dried blood samples routinely collected from newborns did not effectively identify cytomegalovirus (CMV), a leading cause of sensorineural hearing loss in children, according to the April 14 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.
An estimated 20,000 to 40,000 infants are born each year with congenital CMV in the United States, but 90% to 95% have no clinical abnormalities at birth that will be detected by routine examination, according to the authors. Because dried blood spots (DBS) are collected routinely in the United States for newborn metabolic screenings, there has been considerable interest in detecting CMV in these specimens with the use of polymerase chain reaction (PCR), a molecular genetics technique that permits the analysis of any short sequence of DNA. However, the research suggests that DMV testing with DBS real-time PCR had low sensitivity and did not identify approximately two-thirds of the congenital CMV infections. The results underscore the need to evaluate other high-throughput methods that can be adapted to large-scale newborn CMV screening.
Cardiovascular Health and Hearing
Although hearing loss is often considered to be a normal part of aging, a study in the American Journal of Audiology suggests that cardiovascular health can offset the effects of age-related hearing loss.
This cross-sectional study measured cardiovascular health, pure-tone thresholds at 1,000 to 4,000 Hz, and distortion-product otoacoustic emissions (DPOAEs) in 101 participants aged 10Р78 years old. The older participants had worse pure-tone hearing sensitivity and DPOAEs, affirming the effect of aging on hearing loss. However, older participants with low cardiovascular fitness had significantly worse pure-tone hearing at 2,000 and 4,000 Hz. DPOAEs were not significantly influenced by the level of cardiovascular fitness across all age groups. Visit “papers in press” at The American Journal of Audiology.
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May 2010
Volume 15, Issue 6