Innovative test for deafness makes impact

Innovative test for deafness makes impact

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Doctoral student Eliot Shearer helps design OtoSCOPE
Eliot Shearer and colleagues discuss the OtoSCOPE platform. Video by David Gamradt

There are over 70 known genes that can cause deafness.

Traditionally, to find the problematic gene, physicians tested each gene individually, an expensive and lengthy process.

The Motley Fool recently named the UI one of three universities in the country with “super-high” post-graduation placement rates. While data for the Class of 2014 won’t be available for a while, many students have already landed good jobs—including some of “Iowa’s Hot 50 Jobs”—or are pursuing advance degrees. This is the third in a series of videos and features, showing where UI students are heading after graduation.

Eliot Shearer, an M.D. and a student receiving his Ph.D. in molecular physiology and biophysics from Athens, Ohio, helped develop a method that could test all the genes at one time to identify the cause of deafness.

In this video feature, Shearer and his colleagues discuss the OtoSCOPE, an innovative new testing platform that can scan all the genes in the time it would normally take to examine one gene.

After graduating this spring, Eliot will begin his residency in otolaryngology at the University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics, and he will continue his research under Dr. Richard Smith.

See a related story here.


David Gamradt, UI Video Services, 319-335-5741


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