Generating inner ear organoids containing putative cochlear hair cells from human pluripotent stem cells

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


  • Minjin Jeong
  • Nerissa K. Kirkwood
  • Jumana Al-aama
  • Majlinda Lako
  • Corné J. Kros
  • Lyle Armstrong

Colleges, School and Institutes


In view of the prevalence of sensorineural hearing defects in an ageing population, the development of protocols to generate cochlear hair cells and their associated sensory neurons as tools to further our understanding of inner ear development are highly desirable. We report herein a robust protocol for the generation of both vestibular and cochlear hair cells from human pluripotent stem cells which represents an advance over currently available methods that have been reported to generate vestibular hair cells only. Generating otic organoids from human pluripotent stem cells using a three-dimensional culture system, we show formation of both types of sensory hair cells bearing stereociliary bundles with active mechano-sensory ion channels. These cells share many morphological characteristics with their in vivo counterparts during embryonic development of the cochlear and vestibular organs and moreover demonstrate electrophysiological activity detected through single-cell patch clamping. Collectively these data represent an advance in our ability to generate cells of an otic lineage and will be useful for building models of the sensory regions of the cochlea and vestibule.


Original languageEnglish
Article number922
Number of pages13
JournalCell Death and Disease
Issue number9
Publication statusPublished - 11 Sep 2018