Here are some interesting news from the World...
Discount CI in India...
One fifth of the price of the cheapest CI devices on market. Indian doctors are now trying to get permission to test the cheaper devices on cats. Approximately 1 million people are candidates to the cheaper CI.
Advanced Bionics www.bionicear.com
Medical Electronics, www.medel.com
Cochlear Corporation, www.cochlear.com
PLASTIC PLAYGROUND SLIDES A HAZARD FOR IMPLANTEES
The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported last week on a little-known danger for people with cochlear implants: plastic playground slides. Children with implants have had their devices “zapped” by static electric shock, the newspaper said, and while the shock doesn’t ruin the implant, it requires an inconvenient trip to an audiologist. Static electricity is such a major concern that Washington University electrical engineer Robert Morley has received a grant to study plastic slides, one of its main sources. Children with cochlear implants can go down metal slides worry-free, but as more playgrounds change to plastic, children are faced with a choice: don’t play, or play without their implants, and sound. Said Peg Jones of the St. Joseph Institute for the Deaf: “It’s a completely different experience to go down the slide without the wind and the ‘whee’.”
STEM CELL RESEARCH COULD OFFER DEAFNESS CURE
Stem cell research could offer a cure for deafness within 10 years, said researchers from Sheffield University in the U.K. Dr. Marcelo Rivolta of the university’s Institute of Molecular Physiology revealed his research last Wednesday at a conference organized by the Royal National Institute for Deaf People (RNID). His team is using embryonic stem cells harvested from two sources – human embryonic stem cells and cells from the fetal cochlea – in an effort to grow new cells in the inner ear, reported the London Daily Mail. After 10 months, it has been shown that stem cells from the sensory nerves can be regrown in damaged areas, which could lead to the return of hearing. “It is a very challenging approach but we are confident it is possible and the potential for these cells is there,” said Dr. Rivolta.
PORTABLE TRANSLATION DEVICE IN DEVELOPMENT
Researchers at the University of California, Berkeley are exploring how to use mobile devices to provide sound awareness. They’ve created an application that causes a phone to continuously record the last 30 seconds of sounds nearby. If you wanted to know what sounds just occurred near you – something a person says to you, environmental sounds, etc. – you would press a button and the application would ask an operator to describe the last 30 seconds of sound. The operator would then send you a text message with a description of the sounds. According to Tara Matthews, a graduate student working with Professor Jen Mankoff, people are needed in San Francisco and Los Angeles to help study the new devices. You would use it for two weeks, answer a daily email and participate in three interviews (in person, phone or IM), and in return, receive about $150. Contact email@example.com if you want to get involved.