Inner ear pathology in the Palmerston North autoimmune strain mouse

Dennis R. Trune, Jane I. Morton, James P. Craven, Sean J. Traynor, Curt R. Mitchell

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Scopus citations


The Palmerston North autoimmune strain mouse is a model for spontaneous systemic lupus erythematosus. Inner ear structure and function were examined during the onset and progression of systemic autoimmune disease to identify potentially correlated auditory system pathology. The onset of systemic disease occurred at 4 to 5 months of age and was characterized by elevated serum immune complexes, cryoglobulins, and antinuclear antibodies. Coincident with the onset of autoimmune disease was degeneration of the apical turn stria vascularis and outer hair cells. These cochlear changes progressed basal-ward. At 10 months of age, auditory brainstem response thresholds were elevated and the stria vascularis area was measurably smaller throughout the cochlea. Immunohistochemical staining showed immunoglobulin G deposits within the organ of Corti, the vas spirale of the basilar membrane, the scala tympani, and marrow cavities of the bony otic capsule. These results suggest that cochlear pathology may be immune mediated in this mouse, which would make the strain suitable for the study of the mechanisms relating inner ear abnormalities and autoimmune disease.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)259-266
Number of pages8
JournalAmerican Journal of Otolaryngology--Head and Neck Medicine and Surgery
Issue number5
StatePublished - 1991


  • Palmerston North mouse
  • autoimmune disease
  • immunoglobulin
  • inner ear
  • pathology

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Otorhinolaryngology


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