Ben Shapiro is a professor at the University of Maryland, USA. In 2013 we awarded him a three-year Translational Research (TRIH) Grant to develop a technology to use magnetic forces to deliver drugs to the inner ear .
Ben received his undergraduate degree from the Georgia Institute of Technology, and his PhD from the Control and Dynamical Systems option at Caltech. He’s a professor at the University of Maryland, USA, and a founder of the start-up company Otomagnetics.
Ben’s research focuses on modelling, design, and controlling micro-scale systems for chemical, biological, and clinical applications. One of his major research themes is using magnetic forces to direct therapy to disease targets, such as the inner ear.
You can find out more about Ben’s work on his lab webpage.
What do you see as the most exciting breakthrough in hearing research in the last 10 years?
The advancement in hearing aids over the last decade has been amazing.
What do you think will be the next big step forwards?
To help treat hearing loss, we believe a key issue is delivering drugs safely and effectively to the middle and inner ear. So we’ve focused on developing a technology that can direct drugs precisely to these parts of the ear.
What does Action on Hearing Loss funding mean to you?
Action on Hearing Loss funding is critical for us. It’s helping us to move a promising hearing treatment technology from the laboratory towards use in patients.
Why have you chosen to work in hearing research?
We believe we can make a difference, and we hope to be able to reduce the severity of sudden sensorineural hearing loss, tinnitus, and middle ear infections.
What do you hope your research will achieve?
We hope to be able to improve the treatment of ear conditions, and help treat people to reduce the incidence and severity of hearing loss.