Lisa Cunningham, PhD, NIDCD Scientist

Lisa Cunningham, PhD

The public is invited to attend a Thursday, December 10, 2015 talk titled “How NIDCD research is preventing or reversing hearing loss,” as part of the NIDCD Speaker Series: Beyond the Lab, Understanding Communication Disorders. This talk, which is scheduled for 11:00 AM to 12:00 PM in the Porter Neuroscience Research Center, Building 35A, Room 640, on the NIH campus in Bethesda, Md, will be given by Lisa Cunningham, PhD, chief, NIDCD Section on Sensory Cell Biology.

The NIDCD reports that its speaker series is designed for administrative and support staff as well as scientists, and gives NIH staff and the public the opportunity to learn about the NIDCD’s research and about scientific advances in communication disorders. The goal of the speaker series is to present the science of NIDCD mission areas in ways that everyone can understand.

According to the NIDCD, communication disorders affect hearing, balance, taste, smell, voice, speech, and language. While science and technology have greatly improved our ability to communicate, life can be very challenging for those with communication disorders, affecting emotional, social, educational, and brain development. The cost of these disorders in terms of unfulfilled potential, quality of life, and economic factors is immeasurable. The NIDCD is working to advance our understanding of all aspects of human communication. Studies conducted by NIDCD scientists and grantees have contributed to significant developments that improve the lives of millions of individuals with communication disorders.

About NIDCD Speaker Lisa Cunningham

Lisa Cunningham originally trained as a clinical audiologist, and then received a PhD in Neuroscience from the University of Virginia. She did a post-doctoral fellowship in Auditory Neuroscience at the University of Washington before starting her own lab at the Medical University of South Carolina in 2004. In 2011, Dr Cunningham joined the Intramural Research Program at the NIDCD, where her lab conducts studies aimed at understanding the cellular and molecular mechanisms of hearing loss. Her lab also conducts translational research studies aimed at developing therapies to protect the hearing of people who are at risk for hearing loss. An area of particular focus is hearing loss caused by therapeutic drugs that are used clinically to treat serious infectious diseases or cancer. Some of these drugs are toxic to the inner ear and thus cause permanent hearing loss as a side effect. A major goal of research in the Cunningham lab is to develop therapies that can protect the hearing of patients receiving these lifesaving drugs.

The speaker series program is sponsored by the NIDCD, which is part of the National Institutes of Health (NIH), and a component of the US Department of Health and Human Services. For questions or reasonable accommodation requests, contact Melissa McGowan at 301-496-7243. For those who cannot attend this talk in person, a webcast will be available.

Source: NIDCD