Surgically acquired unilateral deafness: a unique model for the investigation of plasticity in the human auditory system Event as iCalendar


11 April 2017

5 - 6:30pm

Venue: Function Room 220, Building 730, Tāmaki Innovation Campus

Location: 261 Morrin Road, St Johns, Auckland

Refreshments: 5-5.30pm

Seminar: 5.30-6.30pm

Please RSVP: to Kirsty Mcenteer, email, or phone 09 923-5536

The Eisdell Moore Centre and the Section of Audiology present:

Michael Maslin PhD


In the auditory modality, one major challenge in investigating the physiological mechanisms of tinnitus and hyperacusis in humans has been that the pattern and severity of deafferentation of the sensory hair cells within the cochlea, is unknown. This results in heterogenous groups, mixed patterns of plasticity and an inability to differentiate changes in neural activity due to plasticity from altered audibility. There is an urgent need to overcome these methodological challenges in order to better understand the neurological mechanisms of tinnitus and hyperacusis in humans, a key step in the development of causal interventions.

One patient group offers the unique opportunity to overcome these methodological limitations; those with surgically-induced unilateral deafness. This produces a controlled and known pattern of deafferentation, and the audibility of sound via the intact ear does not change.

This presentation provides an overview of the author’s work describing plasticity in the human auditory system following surgically acquired unilateral deafness, and includes recent contributions that connect physiological plasticity with perceptual symptoms of tinnitus and hyperpacusis. Potential avenues for future research will also be proposed.


After graduating with an MSc in audiology from The University of Manchester in 2005, Michael completed his training as an audiological scientist in 2006. He completed a PhD in 2010 and was on the teaching staff and completed postdoctoral research at the University of Manchester, Department of Audiology. He then worked for the Interacoustics Academy, an academic group based in Denmark which offers training and education in audiological and vestibular diagnostics worldwide and in 2017 moved to New Zealand with his family where he will continue in the same role with the Interacoustics Academy and with ECSltd.

Map and location of Tāmaki Innovation Campus