Deafness: A general term for the complete loss of the ability to hear from both ears.Hearing Loss, Sensorineural: Hearing loss resulting from damage to the COCHLEA and the sensorineural elements which lie internally beyond the oval and round windows. These elements include the AUDITORY NERVE and its connections in the BRAINSTEM.Hearing Loss: A general term for the complete or partial loss of the ability to hear from one or both ears.Cochlea: The part of the inner ear (LABYRINTH) that is concerned with hearing. It forms the anterior part of the labyrinth, as a snail-like structure that is situated almost horizontally anterior to the VESTIBULAR LABYRINTH.Pedigree: The record of descent or ancestry, particularly of a particular condition or trait, indicating individual family members, their relationships, and their status with respect to the trait or condition.Genes, Recessive: Genes that influence the PHENOTYPE only in the homozygous state.Ear, Inner: The essential part of the hearing organ consists of two labyrinthine compartments: the bony labyrinthine and the membranous labyrinth. The bony labyrinth is a complex of three interconnecting cavities or spaces (COCHLEA; VESTIBULAR LABYRINTH; and SEMICIRCULAR CANALS) in the TEMPORAL BONE. Within the bony labyrinth lies the membranous labyrinth which is a complex of sacs and tubules (COCHLEAR DUCT; SACCULE AND UTRICLE; and SEMICIRCULAR DUCTS) forming a continuous space enclosed by EPITHELIUM and connective tissue. These spaces are filled with LABYRINTHINE FLUIDS of various compositions.Evoked Potentials, Auditory, Brain Stem: Electrical waves in the CEREBRAL CORTEX generated by BRAIN STEM structures in response to auditory click stimuli. These are found to be abnormal in many patients with CEREBELLOPONTINE ANGLE lesions, MULTIPLE SCLEROSIS, or other DEMYELINATING DISEASES.Connexins: A group of homologous proteins which form the intermembrane channels of GAP JUNCTIONS. The connexins are the products of an identified gene family which has both highly conserved and highly divergent regions. The variety contributes to the wide range of functional properties of gap junctions.Syndrome: A characteristic symptom complex.Hearing Loss, Unilateral: Partial or complete hearing loss in one ear.Hair Cells, Auditory: Sensory cells in the organ of Corti, characterized by their apical stereocilia (hair-like projections). The inner and outer hair cells, as defined by their proximity to the core of spongy bone (the modiolus), change morphologically along the COCHLEA. Towards the cochlear apex, the length of hair cell bodies and their apical STEREOCILIA increase, allowing differential responses to various frequencies of sound.Stria Vascularis: A layer of stratified EPITHELIUM forming the endolymphatic border of the cochlear duct at the lateral wall of the cochlea. Stria vascularis contains primarily three cell types (marginal, intermediate, and basal), and capillaries. The marginal cells directly facing the ENDOLYMPH are important in producing ion gradients and endochoclear potential.Spiral Ganglion: The sensory ganglion of the COCHLEAR NERVE. The cells of the spiral ganglion send fibers peripherally to the cochlear hair cells and centrally to the COCHLEAR NUCLEI of the BRAIN STEM.Hearing: The ability or act of sensing and transducing ACOUSTIC STIMULATION to the CENTRAL NERVOUS SYSTEM. It is also called audition.Cochlear Implants: Electronic hearing devices typically used for patients with normal outer and middle ear function, but defective inner ear function. In the COCHLEA, the hair cells (HAIR CELLS, VESTIBULAR) may be absent or damaged but there are residual nerve fibers. The device electrically stimulates the COCHLEAR NERVE to create sound sensation.Hearing Loss, Bilateral: Partial hearing loss in both ears.Audiometry: The testing of the acuity of the sense of hearing to determine the thresholds of the lowest intensity levels at which an individual can hear a set of tones. The frequencies between 125 and 8000 Hz are used to test air conduction thresholds and the frequencies between 250 and 4000 Hz are used to test bone conduction thresholds.Consanguinity: The magnitude of INBREEDING in humans.Cochlear Implantation: Surgical insertion of an electronic hearing device (COCHLEAR IMPLANTS) with electrodes to the COCHLEAR NERVE in the inner ear to create sound sensation in patients with residual nerve fibers.Usher Syndromes: Autosomal recessive hereditary disorders characterized by congenital SENSORINEURAL HEARING LOSS and RETINITIS PIGMENTOSA. Genetically and symptomatically heterogeneous, clinical classes include type I, type II, and type III. Their severity, age of onset of retinitis pigmentosa and the degree of vestibular dysfunction are variable.Mutation: Any detectable and heritable change in the genetic material that causes a change in the GENOTYPE and which is transmitted to daughter cells and to succeeding generations.Lipreading: The process by which an observer comprehends speech by watching the movements of the speaker's lips without hearing the speaker's voice.Hearing Tests: Part of an ear examination that measures the ability of sound to reach the brain.Hearing Loss, Central: Hearing loss due to disease of the AUDITORY PATHWAYS (in the CENTRAL NERVOUS SYSTEM) which originate in the COCHLEAR NUCLEI of the PONS and then ascend bilaterally to the MIDBRAIN, the THALAMUS, and then the AUDITORY CORTEX in the TEMPORAL LOBE. Bilateral lesions of the auditory pathways are usually required to cause central hearing loss. Cortical deafness refers to loss of hearing due to bilateral auditory cortex lesions. Unilateral BRAIN STEM lesions involving the cochlear nuclei may result in unilateral hearing loss.Endolymph: The lymph fluid found in the membranous labyrinth of the ear. (McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Scientific and Technical Terms, 4th ed)Wolfram Syndrome: A hereditary condition characterized by multiple symptoms including those of DIABETES INSIPIDUS; DIABETES MELLITUS; OPTIC ATROPHY; and DEAFNESS. This syndrome is also known as DIDMOAD (first letter of each word) and is usually associated with VASOPRESSIN deficiency. It is caused by mutations in gene WFS1 encoding wolframin, a 100-kDa transmembrane protein.Sign Language: A system of hand gestures used for communication by the deaf or by people speaking different languages.Waardenburg Syndrome: Rare, autosomal dominant disease with variable penetrance and several known clinical types. Characteristics may include depigmentation of the hair and skin, congenital deafness, heterochromia iridis, medial eyebrow hyperplasia, hypertrophy of the nasal root, and especially dystopia canthorum. The underlying cause may be defective development of the neural crest (neurocristopathy). Waardenburg's syndrome may be closely related to piebaldism. Klein-Waardenburg Syndrome refers to a disorder that also includes upper limb abnormalities.Cochlear Nerve: The cochlear part of the 8th cranial nerve (VESTIBULOCOCHLEAR NERVE). The cochlear nerve fibers originate from neurons of the SPIRAL GANGLION and project peripherally to cochlear hair cells and centrally to the cochlear nuclei (COCHLEAR NUCLEUS) of the BRAIN STEM. They mediate the sense of hearing.Hypoparathyroidism: A condition caused by a deficiency of PARATHYROID HORMONE (or PTH). It is characterized by HYPOCALCEMIA and hyperphosphatemia. Hypocalcemia leads to TETANY. The acquired form is due to removal or injuries to the PARATHYROID GLANDS. The congenital form is due to mutations of genes, such as TBX1; (see DIGEORGE SYNDROME); CASR encoding CALCIUM-SENSING RECEPTOR; or PTH encoding parathyroid hormone.Auditory Threshold: The audibility limit of discriminating sound intensity and pitch.Organ of Corti: The spiral EPITHELIUM containing sensory AUDITORY HAIR CELLS and supporting cells in the cochlea. Organ of Corti, situated on the BASILAR MEMBRANE and overlaid by a gelatinous TECTORIAL MEMBRANE, converts sound-induced mechanical waves to neural impulses to the brain.Audiometry, Pure-Tone: Measurement of hearing based on the use of pure tones of various frequencies and intensities as auditory stimuli.Hair Cells, Auditory, Inner: Auditory sensory cells of organ of Corti, usually placed in one row medially to the core of spongy bone (the modiolus). Inner hair cells are in fewer numbers than the OUTER AUDITORY HAIR CELLS, and their STEREOCILIA are approximately twice as thick as those of the outer hair cells.Jervell-Lange Nielsen Syndrome: A form of long QT syndrome that is associated with congenital deafness. It is characterized by abnormal cardioelectrophysiology involving the VOLTAGE-GATED POTASSIUM CHANNEL. It results from mutation of KCNQ1 gene (Subtype 1 or JLN1) or the KCNE1 gene (Subtype 2 or JLN2).Stereocilia: Mechanosensing organelles of hair cells which respond to fluid motion or fluid pressure changes. They have various functions in many different animals, but are primarily used in hearing.Cochlear Diseases: Pathological processes of the snail-like structure (COCHLEA) of the inner ear (LABYRINTH) which can involve its nervous tissue, blood vessels, or fluid (ENDOLYMPH).Tectorial Membrane: A membrane, attached to the bony SPIRAL LAMINA, overlying and coupling with the hair cells of the ORGAN OF CORTI in the inner ear. It is a glycoprotein-rich keratin-like layer containing fibrils embedded in a dense amorphous substance.Genetic Linkage: The co-inheritance of two or more non-allelic GENES due to their being located more or less closely on the same CHROMOSOME.Vestibular Diseases: Pathological processes of the VESTIBULAR LABYRINTH which contains part of the balancing apparatus. Patients with vestibular diseases show instability and are at risk of frequent falls.DNA Mutational Analysis: Biochemical identification of mutational changes in a nucleotide sequence.Stapes: One of the three ossicles of the middle ear. It transmits sound vibrations from the INCUS to the internal ear (Ear, Internal see LABYRINTH).Mutation, Missense: A mutation in which a codon is mutated to one directing the incorporation of a different amino acid. This substitution may result in an inactive or unstable product. (From A Dictionary of Genetics, King & Stansfield, 5th ed)Transcription Factor Brn-3C: A POU domain factor that activates neuronal cell GENETIC TRANSCRIPTION of GENES encoding NEUROFILAMENT PROTEINS, alpha internexin, and SYNAPTOSOMAL-ASSOCIATED PROTEIN 25. Mutations in the Brn-3c gene have been associated with DEAFNESS.Hearing Disorders: Conditions that impair the transmission of auditory impulses and information from the level of the ear to the temporal cortices, including the sensorineural pathways.Chromosome Mapping: Any method used for determining the location of and relative distances between genes on a chromosome.Genes, Dominant: Genes that influence the PHENOTYPE both in the homozygous and the heterozygous state.KCNQ Potassium Channels: A family of delayed rectifier voltage-gated potassium channels that share homology with their founding member, KCNQ1 PROTEIN. KCNQ potassium channels have been implicated in a variety of diseases including LONG QT SYNDROME; DEAFNESS; and EPILEPSY.Vestibular Aqueduct: A small bony canal linking the vestibule of the inner ear to the posterior part of the internal surface of the petrous TEMPORAL BONE. It transmits the endolymphatic duct and two small blood vessels.Hair Color: Color of hair or fur.Persons With Hearing Impairments: Persons with any degree of loss of hearing that has an impact on their activities of daily living or that requires special assistance or intervention.Hearing Loss, Conductive: Hearing loss due to interference with the mechanical reception or amplification of sound to the COCHLEA. The interference is in the outer or middle ear involving the EAR CANAL; TYMPANIC MEMBRANE; or EAR OSSICLES.Labyrinth Diseases: Pathological processes of the inner ear (LABYRINTH) which contains the essential apparatus of hearing (COCHLEA) and balance (SEMICIRCULAR CANALS).Ichthyosis: Any of several generalized skin disorders characterized by dryness, roughness, and scaliness, due to hypertrophy of the stratum corneum epidermis. Most are genetic, but some are acquired, developing in association with other systemic disease or genetic syndrome.Temporal Bone: Either of a pair of compound bones forming the lateral (left and right) surfaces and base of the skull which contains the organs of hearing. It is a large bone formed by the fusion of parts: the squamous (the flattened anterior-superior part), the tympanic (the curved anterior-inferior part), the mastoid (the irregular posterior portion), and the petrous (the part at the base of the skull).Abnormalities, MultiplePhenotype: The outward appearance of the individual. It is the product of interactions between genes, and between the GENOTYPE and the environment.Cochlear Duct: A spiral tube that is firmly suspended in the bony shell-shaped part of the cochlea. This ENDOLYMPH-filled cochlear duct begins at the vestibule and makes 2.5 turns around a core of spongy bone (the modiolus) thus dividing the PERILYMPH-filled spiral canal into two channels, the SCALA VESTIBULI and the SCALA TYMPANI.Ataxia: Impairment of the ability to perform smoothly coordinated voluntary movements. This condition may affect the limbs, trunk, eyes, pharynx, larynx, and other structures. Ataxia may result from impaired sensory or motor function. Sensory ataxia may result from posterior column injury or PERIPHERAL NERVE DISEASES. Motor ataxia may be associated with CEREBELLAR DISEASES; CEREBRAL CORTEX diseases; THALAMIC DISEASES; BASAL GANGLIA DISEASES; injury to the RED NUCLEUS; and other conditions.Goiter: Enlargement of the THYROID GLAND that may increase from about 20 grams to hundreds of grams in human adults. Goiter is observed in individuals with normal thyroid function (euthyroidism), thyroid deficiency (HYPOTHYROIDISM), or hormone overproduction (HYPERTHYROIDISM). Goiter may be congenital or acquired, sporadic or endemic (GOITER, ENDEMIC).Hair Cells, Auditory, Outer: Sensory cells of organ of Corti. In mammals, they are usually arranged in three or four rows, and away from the core of spongy bone (the modiolus), lateral to the INNER AUDITORY HAIR CELLS and other supporting structures. Their cell bodies and STEREOCILIA increase in length from the cochlear base toward the apex and laterally across the rows, allowing differential responses to various frequencies of sound.Hearing Aids: Wearable sound-amplifying devices that are intended to compensate for impaired hearing. These generic devices include air-conduction hearing aids and bone-conduction hearing aids. (UMDNS, 1999)DNA, Mitochondrial: Double-stranded DNA of MITOCHONDRIA. In eukaryotes, the mitochondrial GENOME is circular and codes for ribosomal RNAs, transfer RNAs, and about 10 proteins.Nephritis, Hereditary: A group of inherited conditions characterized initially by HEMATURIA and slowly progressing to RENAL INSUFFICIENCY. The most common form is the Alport syndrome (hereditary nephritis with HEARING LOSS) which is caused by mutations in genes for TYPE IV COLLAGEN and defective GLOMERULAR BASEMENT MEMBRANE.Bulbar Palsy, Progressive: A motor neuron disease marked by progressive weakness of the muscles innervated by cranial nerves of the lower brain stem. Clinical manifestations include dysarthria, dysphagia, facial weakness, tongue weakness, and fasciculations of the tongue and facial muscles. The adult form of the disease is marked initially by bulbar weakness which progresses to involve motor neurons throughout the neuroaxis. Eventually this condition may become indistinguishable from AMYOTROPHIC LATERAL SCLEROSIS. Fazio-Londe syndrome is an inherited form of this illness which occurs in children and young adults. (Adams et al., Principles of Neurology, 6th ed, p1091; Brain 1992 Dec;115(Pt 6):1889-1900)Vestibule, Labyrinth: An oval, bony chamber of the inner ear, part of the bony labyrinth. It is continuous with bony COCHLEA anteriorly, and SEMICIRCULAR CANALS posteriorly. The vestibule contains two communicating sacs (utricle and saccule) of the balancing apparatus. The oval window on its lateral wall is occupied by the base of the STAPES of the MIDDLE EAR.Ear: The hearing and equilibrium system of the body. It consists of three parts: the EXTERNAL EAR, the MIDDLE EAR, and the INNER EAR. Sound waves are transmitted through this organ where vibration is transduced to nerve signals that pass through the ACOUSTIC NERVE to the CENTRAL NERVOUS SYSTEM. The inner ear also contains the vestibular organ that maintains equilibrium by transducing signals to the VESTIBULAR NERVE.Coloboma: Congenital anomaly in which some of the structures of the eye are absent due to incomplete fusion of the fetal intraocular fissure during gestation.Acoustic Stimulation: Use of sound to elicit a response in the nervous system.Auditory Cortex: The region of the cerebral cortex that receives the auditory radiation from the MEDIAL GENICULATE BODY.National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders (U.S.): Component of the NATIONAL INSTITUTES OF HEALTH. It conducts and supports biomedical research and research training on normal mechanisms as well as diseases and disorders of hearing, balance, smell, taste, voice, speech, and language. It was established in 1988.Keratoderma, Palmoplantar: Group of mostly hereditary disorders characterized by thickening of the palms and soles as a result of excessive keratin formation leading to hypertrophy of the stratum corneum (hyperkeratosis).Genetic Testing: Detection of a MUTATION; GENOTYPE; KARYOTYPE; or specific ALLELES associated with genetic traits, heritable diseases, or predisposition to a disease, or that may lead to the disease in descendants. It includes prenatal genetic testing.Point Mutation: A mutation caused by the substitution of one nucleotide for another. This results in the DNA molecule having a change in a single base pair.Lod Score: The total relative probability, expressed on a logarithmic scale, that a linkage relationship exists among selected loci. Lod is an acronym for "logarithmic odds."Homozygote: An individual in which both alleles at a given locus are identical.Cochlear Nucleus: The brain stem nucleus that receives the central input from the cochlear nerve. The cochlear nucleus is located lateral and dorsolateral to the inferior cerebellar peduncles and is functionally divided into dorsal and ventral parts. It is tonotopically organized, performs the first stage of central auditory processing, and projects (directly or indirectly) to higher auditory areas including the superior olivary nuclei, the medial geniculi, the inferior colliculi, and the auditory cortex.