Some research that appeared on our radar recently: “Oridonin ameliorates noise-induced hearing loss by blocking NLRP3 – NEK7 mediated inflammasome activation” (March 23, 2021).
Link to the paper:
Here, we further determined that treatment with oridonin could indeed interrupt the interaction between NLRP3 and NEK7 as well as inhibit the downstream inflammasome activation in mouse cochleae after noise exposure. Furthermore, we tested anakinra, another inflammatory inhibitor, and it was shown to partially alleviate the degree of hearing impairment in some frequencies in an NIHL mouse model. These discoveries suggest that inhibiting NLRP3 inflammasomes and the downstream signaling pathway may provide a new strategy for the clinical treatment of NIHL.
What does that mean?
Here is an extremely loose – but simple – explanation of what this means:
- inflammation is involved in noise-induced hearing loss (NIHL)
- we aren’t sure how, exactly
- but it seems that… sometimes… inflammation can go way too far
- which might actually make things worse, or interfere with healing
- this could be what happens in the ear after acoustic trauma
- we aren’t sure about that either
- but according to this theory…
- maybe a drug that keeps the inflammation process from going way too far…
- … might also help with the healing process and prevent further damage
- (by making sure inflammation does not get carried away)
- this might apply in the context of noise-induced hearing loss
- Oridonin, anakinra are two drugs worth studying for this
- but we aren’t sure… yet
Now, for those of you who prefer the nitty gritty details… diving deep into the science… and the technical side of things…
Here is some further reading about Oridonin – “a covalent NLRP3 inhibitor with strong anti-inflammasome activity” – from Nature:
From that paper:
Oridonin (Ori) is the major active ingredient of the traditional Chinese medicinal herb Rabdosia rubescens and has anti-inflammatory activity, but the target of Ori remains unknown. NLRP3 is a central component of NLRP3 inflammasome and has been involved in a wide variety of chronic inflammation-driven human diseases.
(I wonder if it has anything to do with osteoclasts…)
That’s all for now.