Investigating the effects of repurposed diuretic, steroid and immunosuppressive drugs in Meniere’s disease
Principal Investigator: Dr. Shresh Pathak
Disease: Meniere’s disease
Research Description: Meniere’s disease (MD) is a disease that affects mainly adults and causes episodic vertigo, fluctuating hearing loss, and aural fullness. Initial management of this chronic disease is dietary restriction of salt, use of diuretics and possible use of corticosteroids. When corticosteroids are used to treat MD, they predominantly result in vertigo control rather than hearing restoration. The team’s previous research in autoimmune inner ear disease (AIED) demonstrated that in corticosteroid-resistant AIED patients, hearing could be improved with use of anakinra, an immunosuppressive drug approved to treat rheumatoid arthritis. Furthermore, it has been shown that diuretics may have an effect on cytokine release from immune cells in cardiac diseases. This project will determine the effect of diuretics, corticosteroids or anakinra on the release of pro-inflammatory cytokines from the immune cells isolated from patients with MD. Data from this preclinical study could elucidate a mechanism of inflammation in MD patients, identify possible molecular targets for clinical intervention, and become the basis for a future clinical trial.
Funding Partners: Becky and Lester Knight
CWR funding role: Primary funder