Guy Richardson investigates the molecular basis of hearing through his studies of the inner ear. He has discovered that structures within the cochlea depend on a set of unique proteins to respond to the full complexity of the sound world, and that people with defects in the corresponding genes suffer from hearing loss.
Initially focusing on the tectorial membrane, which spirals along the length of the cochlea, Guy discovered three proteins unique to this structure. He has since discovered further proteins in the sensory hair cells that interact with the tectorial membrane and transmit sound signals to the brain.
He has used transgenic techniques to unpick the complexity of the cochlea’s mechanics, identifying several genetic variants that cause hereditary deafness in humans. Guy received the Grand Prix Scientifique NRJ from the Institut de France in 2005, and he was elected a Fellow of the Academy of Medical Sciences in 2013.
Interest and expertise
Biochemistry and molecular cell biology
Cell biology (incl molecular cell biology)
Microbiology, immunology and developmental biology