Endogenous α1-antitrypsin levels in the perilymphatic fluid correlates with severity of hearing loss

Sabri El-Saied, Heike Schmitt, Martin Durisin, Ben Zion Joshua, Muhammad Abu Tailakh, Nils Prenzler, Thomas Lenarz, Daniel M. Kaplan, Eli C. Lewis, Athanasia Warnecke

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


Objectives: To determine the levels of endogenous α1-antitrypsin in the perilymph of patients undergoing cochlear implant (CI), and its reverse association with the severity of hearing loss. Study Design: Retrospective study. Setting: Tertiary care university hospital. Participants: The study includes 38 patients undergoing CI surgery, 11 patients diagnosed with congenital deafness and 27 non-congenital deafness, eight patients diagnosed with moderate hearing loss (N = 8; PTA = 70 dB), severe hearing loss (N = 11; PTA 70-90 dB) and profound hearing loss (N = 19; PTA > 90 dB). Main outcome and measure: 1 to 12 μL perilymphatic fluids were collected by micropipette. α1-antitrypsin levels were determined, and current and historic audiological parameters were obtained. Results: The congenital and non-congenital group exhibited AAT concentrations of 2.5 ± 1.9 × 106 LFQ and 3.2 ± 1.2 × 106 LFQ, respectively (mean ± SD; P =.38). Mean levels of α1-antitrypsin in the perilymph fluid within the moderate group was 3.64 × 106 ± 2.1 × 106 LFQ vs 3.5 × 106 ± 1.2 × 106 in severe hearing loss (P =.81) and 2.4 × 106 ± 1.1 × 106 LFQ in the profound hearings loss group (P =.06). The difference in levels of AAT in samples from the severe hearings loss group vs the profound hearings loss group reached statistical significance (P =.04). Conclusion: Insufficiency in α1-antitrypsin levels in the perilymph fluid of the inner ear appears to display a relationship with the severity of hearing loss. The prospect of introducing clinical-grade plasma-purified α1-antitrypsin directly onto the site of cochlear injury deserves thorough investigation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)495-499
Number of pages5
JournalClinical Otolaryngology
Issue number4
StatePublished - 1 Jul 2020


  • autoinflammation
  • congenital deafness
  • hearing loss
  • perilymph
  • α1-antitrypsin


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