Demonstration of prosthetic activation of central auditory pathways using [14C]-2-deoxyglucose

David A. Evans, John K. Niparko, Richard A. Altschuler, Kirk A. Frey, Josef M. Miller

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

11 Scopus citations


The cochlear prosthesis is not applicable to patients who lack an implantable cochlea or an intact vestibulocochlear nerve. Direct electrical stimulation of the cochlear nucleus (CN) of the brain stem might provide a method for auditory rehabilitation of these patients. A penetrating CN electrode has been developed and tissue tolerance to this device demonstrated. This study was undertaken to evaluate metabolic activation of central nervous system (CNS) auditory tracts produced by such implants. Regional cerebral glucose use resulting from CN stimulation was estimated in a series of chronically implanted guinea pigs with the use of [14C]-2- deoxyglucose (2-DG). Enhanced 2-DG uptake was observed in structures of the auditory tract. The activation of central auditory structures achieved with CN stimulation was similar to that produced by acoustic stimulation and by electrical stimulation of the modiolar portion of the auditory nerve in control groups. An interesting banding pattern was observed in the inferior colliculus following CN stimulation, as previously described with acoustic stimulation. This study demonstrates that functional metabolic activation of central auditory pathways can be achieved with a penetrating CNS auditory prosthesis.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)128-137
Number of pages10
Issue number2
StatePublished - 1990
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Otorhinolaryngology


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