Resveratrol may help prevent hearing loss

Feb. 22, 2013 at 12:02 AM
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DETROIT, Feb. 22 (UPI) -- Resveratrol, found in red grapes and red wine, may have the potential to protect against hearing and cognitive decline, U.S. researchers suggest.

Lead author Michael D. Seidman, director of the Division of Otologic/Neurotologic Surgery in the Department of Otolaryngology-Head & Neck Surgery at Henry Ford Hospital in Detroit, said the study showed healthy rats were less likely to suffer the long-term effects of noise-induced hearing loss when given resveratrol before being exposed to loud noise for a long period.

"Our latest study focused on resveratrol and its effect on bioinflammation, the body's response to injury and something that is believed to be the cause of many health problems including Alzheimer's disease, cancer, aging and hearing loss," Seidman said in a statement. "Resveratrol was a very powerful chemical that seemed to protect against the body's inflammatory process as it related to aging, cognition and hearing loss."

The latest study was designed to identify the potential protective mechanism of resveratrol following noise exposure by measuring its effect on cyclooxygenase-2, or COX-2.

The study found resveratrol before a loud noise significantly reduced reactive oxygen species formation, inhibited COX-2 expression and reduced noise-induced hearing loss following noise exposure in rats.

"We've shown that by giving animals resveratrol, we can reduce the amount of hearing and cognitive decline," Seidman said.

The study was published online ahead of print in the journal Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery.

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