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NIDCD Advisory Council Welcomes Five New Members

The National Deafness and Other Communication Disorders (NDCD) Advisory Council has added five new members to its roster. The Council advises the secretary of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Service, the director of the NIH, and the director of the NIDCD on matters relating to the conduct and support of research and research training, health information dissemination, and other programs with respect to disorders of hearing and other communication processes. The term for Council members is four years.

Dr. Karen Cruickshanks is director of the graduate program in population health and professor at the University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health. Her research interests include epidemiology of age-related sensory disorders and the epidemiology of diabetes and its complications; and functional implications of multimodal sensory impairments in older people. She is the principal investigator of a large cohort study on age-related hearing loss and other sensory impairments.

Dr. Albert Feng is professor of the Beckman Institute, and professor of the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. His professional interests cut across the broad area of neuroscience. He is studying the neural basis of sound communication, using the frog and bat auditory systems as models. He also leads a team of researchers in the development of biomolecular high-resolution cochlear implants. Dr. Feng is also involved in translational research. A recent project involved transferring knowledge of biological signal processing strategies to guiding the design of intelligent hearing aids. Working with an interdisciplinary team at the Beckman Institute, he helped develop advanced hearing aid technologies with the ability to extract sound embedded in noise. He currently leads a team of researchers that is developing biomolecular high-resolution cochlear implants.

Dr. Charles Greer is professor and director of the interdepartmental neuroscience graduate training program and vice chairman for research at the Department of Neurosurgery, Yale University School of Medicine. He is internationally recognized for his work on local synaptic circuit organization in the olfactory system and the capacity of the nervous system for plasticity. His current research involves understanding the basic mechanisms that contribute to the establishment of orderly topographic maps within the central nervous system, during both normal development and following injury or disease.

Dr. Charlotte Mistretta is a William R. Mann professor and associate dean for research and Ph.D. training, and director of the oral health sciences Ph.D. program at the University of Michigans School of Dentistry. Her field of study is on the development of the sense of taste; current emphasis is on regulation of taste papilla development and innervation to the tongue. Her current research is trying to understand how mammals develop the sense of taste.

Dr. William Yost is chair of speech and hearing sciences at Arizona State University. Formerly, he was with the Parmly Hearing Institute at Loyola University. His research interests include auditory perception and psychoacoustics in areas of pitch perception, sound localization, processing sounds with modulated waveforms, sound source determination and segregation, computational modeling with respect to time-based neural models of complex sounds, and hearing impairment and hearing aids.

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