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Otology and Biomechanics of Hearing

Otology and Biomechanics of Hearing

The research group “Otology and Biomechanics of Hearing” consists of members with medical, engineering, and biological backgrounds involved in basic research and translational projects with the aim to improve hearing of patients. Expertise includes extensive experience in otologic research (particularly in the field of middle-inner-ear physiology and electrophysiology) and in sensor technology development.

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Weiterführende Informationen

[04.05.2024] Our team had a lot of fun at this year's SOLA relay race, running a total of 114.77 km and 2'640 m of elevation through the forests around lake Zurich! 

[12.03.2024] This week, Nathaniel Greene from the University of Colorado visited our group. We very much enjoyed his presentation about his research in hearing loss during high level sound exposure. After a tour through our laboratory and facilities, we discussed future collaborations between our two institutes in the field of bone conduction. Thank you for your visit, we are looking forward to meeting you again!

[12.02.2024] Members of the OtoBM Research group were delighted to participate in the 47th Annual MidWinter Meeting of the Association for Research in Otolaryngology, which took place February 3-7 in Anaheim, California, USA. The conference provided an excellent platform to engage with peers across all branches of hearing research to disseminate new findings and explore novel insights. Reflecting the diverse scope of the conference, our team members presented contributions on a wide range of topics from bone conduction to electrophysiology and middle-ear mechanics:

Ivo Dobrev, PhD unveiled findings from a combination of hybrid FEM and experimental studies. He delved into the relationship between temporal bone 3D motion and intracochlear pressure during bone conduction, as well as how head boundary conditions affect skull motion. Additionally, he shared insights from investigating skull bone sound waves under bone conduction in-vivo.

Leanne Sijgers, PhD, presented insights on the application of bilocated intracochlear electrocochleography during cochlear implantation, offering valuable surgical feedback.

Bastian Baselt, PhD candidate, gave a podium presentation on the middle-ear sound transmission in fresh vs. fresh-frozen human cadaveric temporal bones, utilizing a shape-preserving analysis of transfer functions.

Merlin Schär, PhD presented a poster on the coupled influence of tympanic membrane perforation parameters on hearing loss and surgical outcomes, providing practical insights for both research and clinical practice.

David Bächinger, PhD, introduced a method to remove the aged celloidin matrix from human temporal bones without damaging the specimens, enabling research using samples from large pathology repositories.

Many thanks to the organizing team for creating such a stimulating environment for our vibrant research community.

[01.11.2023] We had a great time at the ARCHES conference, which was held in Salamanca this year! The meeting always provides good opportunities for networking with other researchers in the field of audiology in an informal and friendly atmosphere. 

[23.10.2023] We are happy to announce that the 12th International Symposium on Objective Measures in Auditory Implants will take place on August 22-25, 2026 in Zurich! 

[03.10.2023] Last week, different members of our research group attended the 11th Symposium on Objective measures in Auditory Implants in the beautiful Queen Elisabeth hall of Antwerp, Belgium. Christof Röösli, Flurin Pfiffner, Marlies Geys, Rahel Bertschinger, Ahmet Kunut and Leanne Sijgers all presented their work. It was a fantastic opportunity to discuss the latest findings with other clinicians and researchers in this very inspiring field!

[19.09.2023] Last week, two team members attended the 8th international Congress on Bone Conduction Hearing and Related Technogies in Denver.

Ivo Dobrev, PhD presented three projects during the conference. He spoke about the influence of the head boundary conditions on the skull bone motion under bone conduction. Further he discussed the relation between temporal bone 3D motion and intracochlear pressure under bone conduction and showed the results of the hybrid FEM and experimental study.

Prof. Dr. med. Christof Roosli presented two projects. He showed an in-vivo investigation of the skull bone sound waves under bone conduction and the influence of skull vault contents on the head motion under bone conduction.

They engaged in high-level debates and met different collaboraters during their stay.

[19.09.2023] Two of our PhD students, Rahel Bertschinger and Marlies Geys, attended the biennial Symposium "International Evoked Response Audiometry Study Group" IERASG23 in Cologne, Germany.

They both presented their poster. Rahel on her work about extracochlear electrical stimulation and Marlies on electrocochleographic patterns in cochlear implant users.

During the workshop they got insights in measuring electrically evoked responses, which were complemented by interesting talks from researchers from all over the world.

Thanks to the great social events, they got the chance to connect with both junior and experienced researchers of this very interesting field.

A big thank you to the organisers and the council of the conference.

[10.07.2023] Members of our team visited the Paul Scherrer Institute (PSI) to explore innovative imaging techniques for dynamic middle-ear motion. We're excited about potential collaborations in middle-ear mechanics and imaging in the future!

[19.07.2023] We had a great time at the CIAP conference at Lake Tahoe! We saw familiar faces and got to meet a lot of people in the field, had interesting discussions, and learned new things. Of course, we also found time to explore the beautiful surroundings.

[24.05.2023] Contributions from our group to the HEARING meeting in Ascona were well received – Marlies Geys obtained a travel award and Bastian Baselt won the prize for second best poster! 

[16.02.2023] A few of our group members took part in the ARO MidWinter Meeting in Orlando, Florida this year. They presented some of our latest work and enjoyed fruitful discussions.

[24.05.2023] Our researchers very much enjoyed the HEARING meeting in Ascona. 


[17.03.2024] Our bone conduction research team is growing! Antonio Garcia Bustos and Johannes Niermann both started their PhD projects at the beginning of 2024, both bringing valuable engineering knowledge and experience to their project. Dominik Etter also joined our group at the beginning of 2024, to conduct his PhD as part of a joint project with the X-Ray Imaging and Microscopy group at the Institute for Biomedical Engineering at ETH Zurich. He holds an MSc. in Interdisciplinary Sciences, Physics & Biology track, from ETH Zurich and will work on improving ear CT with refraction using grating interferometry and projects related to the study of middle-ear mechanics.


[02.11.2023] Yuan Zhan and Tobias Mair joined our group as PhD candidates working on sound propagation in bone conduction hearing. Both are medical doctors, with Yuan bringing research experience at the TU Dresden and the otolaryngology department of the University Hospital in Dresden, and Tobias bringing experience in both Inssbruck and Lucerne.


[27.04.2023] Tahmine Farahmandi defended her PhD work today, which focused on bone conduction hearing. We are happy to announce that she successfully passed the defense!


[28.03.2023] Nuwan Liyanage successfully defended his PhD thesis! His work contributed to the development of a fully implantable cochlear implant, and in addition, he studied the effect of cochlear implants on tinnitus relief. 


[27.06.2022] A delegation from our research group attended the MEMRO conference in Boulder, Colorado, where they could exchange ideas with the middle ear mechanics research community. They enjoyed the opportunity to meet in-person again!