Do animals have tinnitus?

Jos J. Eggermont

in The Neuroscience of Tinnitus

Published in print May 2012 | ISBN: 9780199605606
Published online September 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780191741555 | DOI:
Do animals have tinnitus?

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A positive answer to this question will allow in detail investigation of neural substrates at the single neuron and population level underlying tinnitus. Several behavioral models have been developed that are based on detecting the continuous presence of tinnitus. The training is generally focused on conditioning silence as a warning feature for a footshock. Tinnitus may also be detected by its obliteration of a silent gap in noise used as a pre-pulse inhibitor for the startle response to a loud sound. Some surprising results have been obtained, i.e., detecting tinnitus in frequency regions outside those affected by the noise trauma, thus some of the tinnitus-responses may actually reflect the presence of hyperacusis. Nevertheless, several of these behavioral tests have been cross-validated suggesting consistency in detecting tinnitus in animals subjected to agents that in humans frequently cause tinnitus.

Keywords: animal models; conditioned response; gap-startle response; model validity; hyperacusis

Chapter.  9599 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Neuroscience

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