For their project on developing novel probes for objective hearing-screenings the interdisciplinary research group of Prof. Dr.-Ing. Werner Hemmert and Andrej Voss, both chair of Bio-Inspired Information Processing at MSB, Nils Heitmann from the Comprehensive Ear & Hearing Center at the Klinikums rechts der Isar, received the Medical Valley Award.
The Medical Valley Award from the Bavarian Ministry of Economic Affairs, Regional Development and Energy addresses research projects in the healthcare sector that have the potential to become spin-offs and supports the winners in their pre-founding phase with 250.000 Euros over two years.
New probes for objective hearing screenings
For hearing test, commonly devices are used that determine hearing ability through recording so-called otoacoustic emissions (OAE). In this method, first an acoustic signal is induced to the ear canal. If the sensory cells in the inner ear are healthy and work correctly, an acoustic response to the induced signal can then be measured in the ear canal. This method allows to detect the majority of significant hearing impairments. The described technique usually uses small speakers and microphones that are inserted in an ear probe to generate and measure the acoustic signals.
Hearing impairments cause a variety of burdens for the patients. If hearing impairments in children are not detected and the children therefor miss the critical phase of spoken language development, the consequences can be especially severe.
“Our goal is to simplify the design of common hearing test probes in such a way that the costs for the devices decrease to a fraction”, states Andrej Voss, doctoral student at the chair of Bio-Inspired Information Processing and project manager. With reduced costs, mandatory hearing screenings for newborns could become rewarding investments in preventive healthcare. By detecting hearing impairments better and early on, the quality of life could be significantly improved for millions of affected patients.
Professorenprofil von Werner Hemmert, Inhaber des Lehrstuhls für Bioanaloge Informationsverarbeitung, Principal Investigator an der Munich School of BioEngineering und der Munich School of Robotics and Machine Intelligence
MEDIA RELATIONS MSB
Chair of Bio-inspired Information Processing
Munich School of BioEngineering
Phone: 089 289 10847