Insights into the Biology of Hearing and Deafness Revealed by Single-Cell RNA Sequencing

Paul T. Ranum, Alexander T. Goodwin, Hidekane Yoshimura, Diana L. Kolbe, William D. Walls, Jin Young Koh, David Z.Z. He, Richard J.H. Smith

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

9 Scopus citations


Single-cell RNA sequencing is a powerful tool by which to characterize the transcriptional profile of low-abundance cell types, but its application to the inner ear has been hampered by the bony labyrinth, tissue sparsity, and difficulty dissociating the ultra-rare cells of the membranous cochlea. Herein, we present a method to isolate individual inner hair cells (IHCs), outer hair cells (OHCs), and Deiters’ cells (DCs) from the murine cochlea at any post-natal time point. We harvested more than 200 murine IHCs, OHCs, and DCs from post-natal days 15 (p15) to 228 (p228) and leveraged both short- and long-read single-cell RNA sequencing to profile transcript abundance and structure. Our results provide insights into the expression profiles of these cells and document an unappreciated complexity in isoform variety in deafness-associated genes. This refined view of transcription in the organ of Corti improves our understanding of the biology of hearing and deafness.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)3160-3171.e3
JournalCell Reports
Issue number11
Publication statusPublished - Mar 12 2019


All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)

Cite this

Ranum, P. T., Goodwin, A. T., Yoshimura, H., Kolbe, D. L., Walls, W. D., Koh, J. Y., ... Smith, R. J. H. (2019). Insights into the Biology of Hearing and Deafness Revealed by Single-Cell RNA Sequencing. Cell Reports, 26(11), 3160-3171.e3.