Anti-PD-1 Therapy Does Not Influence Hearing Ability in the Most Sensitive Frequency Range, but Mitigates Outer Hair Cell Loss in the Basal Cochlear Region
International Journal of Molecular Sciences
The administration of immune checkpoint inhibitors (ICIs) often leads to immune-related adverse events. However, their effect on auditory function is largely unexplored. Thorough preclinical studies have not been published yet, only sporadic cases and pharmacovigilance reports suggest their significance. Here we investigated the effect of anti-PD-1 antibody treatment (4 weeks, intraperitoneally, 200 μg/mouse, 3 times/week) on hearing function and cochlear morphology in C57BL/6J mice. ICI
... 6J mice. ICI treatment did not influence the hearing thresholds in click or tone burst stimuli at 4–32 kHz frequencies measured by auditory brainstem response. The number and morphology of spiral ganglion neurons were unaltered in all cochlear turns. The apical-middle turns (<32 kHz) showed preservation of the inner and outer hair cells (OHCs), whilst ICI treatment mitigated the age-related loss of OHCs in the basal turn (>32 kHz). The number of Iba1-positive macrophages has also increased moderately in this high frequency region. We conclude that a 4-week long ICI treatment does not affect functional and morphological integrity of the inner ear in the most relevant hearing range (4–32 kHz; apical-middle turns), but a noticeable preservation of OHCs and an increase in macrophage activity appeared in the >32 kHz basal part of the cochlea.