ARO Member News

September 2011

In This Issue
Call for Abstracts
Hotel Reservations
ARO Member Dues
ARO Travel Awards
Other Conferences
Letter from the President
2012 MWM Program
Call for Young Investigator Symposia
Small Grant Support
DRF Hearing Restoration Project
DRF Call for Applications

Call for Abstracts

The Association for Research in Otolaryngology invites you to electronically submit an abstract for the 35th MidWinter Meeting being held at the Manchester Grand Hyatt Hotel in San Diego, California. Please visit the ARO website to submit your abstract by clicking on the submission link. The abstract site will open on September 1, 2011. The deadline to submit is October 1, 2011.

Make Your Hotel Reservations for the 2012 MWM

The 2012 MidWinter Meeting will take place at the Manchester Grand Hyatt Hotel. The hotel is located at One Market Place in San Diego, California, USA.


The group rate for the ARO MidWinter Meeting is $199.


For reservations, call 888-421-1442 and mention the ARO group or click here to make reservations online.

ARO Member Dues

Still need to renew your 2011-2012 membership year dues?  Login to the member services website to pay online.  If you need your login for this website, email the ARO Executive Office for assistance.

ARO Travel Awards

Travel awards to attend the 2012 MidWinter Meeting are available.  The application deadline is October 15, 2011.  Vist the ARO website for details!

Other 2011 Conferences of Interest



We are pleased to provide you with this September, 2011 issue of the ARO e-news update for members.
Do you have information you would like ARO to consider including in a future e-news update?  If yes, please email your content suggestions to


Peter Santi, Ph.D., Editor ARO
Letter from the President


As summer draws to a close, our thoughts turn to the academic year ahead and, of course, planning for the ARO 2012 MidWinter Meeting. The meeting will be held this year in sunny San Diego, California, at the Manchester Grand Hyatt Hotel, February 25-29. We are excited about the new venue.


Judging from participation and questionnaire results, the last meeting in Baltimore, MD was highly successful. Members are engaged and make critical contributions to the organization through their scientific presentations and participation in committees and other activities. Many of the committees are quite active throughout the year and several have introduced new initiatives. For example, the Long Range Planning Committee plans to conduct and transcribe interviews with pioneers in auditory research. This will ensure that the wisdom and experiences of these early leaders in our field will be preserved over the years. A couple of groups, including spARO, are working to develop activities related to mentoring of students and new investigators. We appreciate all the hard work that the members put into these committees.


Committee appointments are made after the MidWinter Meeting; the next appointments will be made by John Middlebrooks following the 2012 meeting. Please volunteer for any committee that is of interest to you.


We have instituted a quarterly ARO email newsletter in an effort to communicate important information and keep the membership informed regarding new initiatives and opportunities. We hope that the membership finds this format helpful. We always appreciate your feedback about the communication tools we use and the website.


The 2012 MidWinter meeting program is being developed at this time. The Presidential Symposium this year is entitled "Listening with the Brain: Cochlear Implants and Central Auditory System Plasticity." The topic of the symposium was introduced nicely by Bob Shannon during his Award of Merit lecture last February ("Ear and Brain: Cochlear Implant Lessons for Hearing"), and combines the scientific interests in central auditory system plasticity with the clinical field of cochlear implantation. We will explore how our knowledge of central auditory system plasticity might inform improved cochlear implant design and patient performance. We have an outstanding panel of speakers for this session, including Bruce Gantz, Rob Shepherd, Andre Kral, Ruth Litovsky and Blake Wilson. Talks will be followed by a thought provoking panel discussion - led by David McAlpine - to include all presenters and Bob Shannon.


Larry Lustig and the Program Committee have accepted 12 symposia and workshops for the program, on a wide range of topics. We will initiate a new format for submission this year, a "Young Investigator Symposium"; this format will offer the opportunity for young investigators (assistant professors, those with faculty positions for < 5 years, and postdocs) to organize a session on a timely topic. Look for details in this newsletter.


On behalf of the entire ARO Council, I wanted to take the opportunity to acknowledge and thank Darla Eastlack for her years of dedication and wonderful service to ARO as Executive Director. We will miss her and wish her the best. The role of Executive Director will be assumed by Lisa Astorga, who has also worked with ARO extensively in the past, particularly over the past year. We welcome Lisa, and thank Talley Management for their services which greatly benefit all of our members.


I look forward to seeing you all in San Diego next February!


Debara L. Tucci, M.D.

ARO President

2012 MWM Program Highlights



  • Listening with the Brain: Cochlear Implants and Central Auditory System Plasticity



  • Speaking for Science: Addressing the Use of Animals in Research: Facing Animal Rights Extremism: A Community Response
  • Mechanisms and Circuitry Underlying Auditory Spectrotemporal Integration
  • Interactive Workshop on 3D Reconstruction of the Ear
  • Molecular Anatomy and Physiology of the Ribbon Synapse
  • Current Theories About the Generation of Otoacoustic Emissions and the Clinical Implications
  • Using Massively-Parallel Next Generation Sequencing Techniques to Advance Studies & Clinical Cares of Hearing Loss
  • The Yin and Young of Sound Localization
  • Vestibular Psychophysics
  • The Spiral Ganglion: Neurogenesis and Concepts for Regeneration
  • New Insights on Vestibular Neuropharmacology: From Bench to Bedside
  • Real-World Hearing: Neural Coding and Perception
ARO Call for Young Investigator Symposia


Beginning this year for the 2012 Spring Meeting, ARO will be accepting submissions for Young Investigator Symposia. These symposia will help ARO address several important goals for the midwinter meeting. We want to increase the visibility and opportunities for young investigators at ARO. We also want to ensure that our platform sessions are topical and interesting.


What is a Young Investigator Symposia?

The Young Investigator Symposium, similar to the nanosymposia offered at the annual Neuroscience meeting, is really just a replacement for one or more of the regular podium slide sessions. Talks are given from the platform every 15 minutes with 10-12 minutes of presentation followed by questions. The key differences between a regular podium session and a Young Investigator Symposia are:

  • Proposed and organized by the participants rather than by the program committee
  • Applications are restricted to junior investigators (Assistant Professors and those in faculty < 5 years) and Postdocs
  • The talks are thematically related, not just a collection of presentations.
  • A minimum of 6 topically related talks are required to create a session.
  • To promote diversity of opinion, no more than two abstracts from any one lab should be in a given symposium.
  • Ideally, most if not all, of the presentations will be given by young investigators.

How do the submitted symposia abstracts differ from normally submitted ARO abstracts?

The abstracts submitted as part of a Young Investigator Symposia will not differ in any way from abstracts normally submitted for the annual meeting. If your symposium is accepted you will still be required to submit your abstract through the ARO website but we will specially designate these abstracts after submission so they are grouped together. If your symposia proposal is not accepted you will still be able to submit your individual abstracts through the normal ARO submission process.


Due Date for submissions for the Young Investigators Symposium is September 15, 2011.

Proposals should be emailed to:

Lawrence R. Lustig, MD 


The proposal should include:

-the Symposium title

-all the proposed abstracts within that symposium (including investigators).


If you have any additional questions, please do not hesitate to contact me directly.



Larry Lustig

Chair, ARO Program Committee

Reminder -
Call for Proposals: Small Grant Support 
The ARO invites proposals for funding of small grants (up to $1000) to support activities either in the US or internationally that would enhance our mission and visibility as the premier hearing research organization in the world. Some specific activities that could be considered include:

1. Sponsorship of an invited lecture for an ARO-member at a meeting, either national or international, particularly one at which ARO does not typically have a presence.

2. Partial support of small 'local' research meetings that serve as a venue for members to meet to discuss focused topics; student participation may be targeted in these grants.

3. Partial support of symposium at an international meeting, for presentations by ARO members, on a topic of interest to members of that society and attendees of the meeting.


Requirements:  applicants must be ARO members, and lectures/events must include a slide and/or other materials that acknowledge ARO support. The ARO will fund up to three grants per year.


This year's deadline for submission of application is October 1, 2011, for activities to take place in the 2012 calendar year.  Notification will take place by December 1, 2011.


Please send proposals to Darla Eastlack ( 

DRF Hearing Restoration Project


DRF is embarking on the Hearing Restoration Project, an innovative venture to restore hearing by biological repair and/or replacement of cells and tissues in the damaged or diseased inner ear. We will assemble a highly qualified team of scientists to work together to conduct critical experiments. Join our consortium of scientists who will meet regularly, propose new approaches and together design experiments to bring ideas to practical fruition. DRF is particularly interested in attracting established scientists with novel and innovative approaches into this exciting field.


Funding for attendance at meetings and conducting experiment will be provided by DRF. Scientists with experience and funding in the regulation of cell phenotype, tissue regeneration, and related fields are encouraged to apply. All applicants must have a current academic appointment, appropriate laboratory space and extramural funding. Please complete the application form and send along with current Curriculum Vitae, and a short statement of your qualifications and a description of how you could contribute to this effort to


Selection of consortium members (maximum ~15, plus invited associate members) will be subject to rigorous review, to assure that the highest quality research results from this effort. Experiments funded by the DRF will be chosen and performed following consortium-driven discussion and ranking.

DRF Call for Applications 


Deafness Research Foundation (DRF) requests applications from both new applicants and DRF awardees applying for second year funding, who are dedicated to exploring new avenues of hearing and balance science.





DRF, the leading national source of private funding for research in hearing and balance science, awards research grant awards of up to $25,000 to researchers once a year to conduct novel investigations of auditory and vestibular function and dysfunction. All research proposals in hearing and balance science, including those for basic, translational and applied clinical research, will be considered for funding. DRF wishes to stimulate research that leads to a continuing and independently fundable line of research.


ELIGIBILITY: Applicants should demonstrate experience and strong research training as well as sufficient institutional support (facilities, time, and mentorship) to carry out the proposed work. Applicants are required to possess M.D., Ph.D., or equivalent degrees as well as a faculty or post-doctoral appointment. Grants are limited to institutions within the United States of America.


INELIGIBILITY: Graduate students are not eligible for DRF grants. Applications for research continuation or bridge funding should not be submitted. DRF will grant funds only for research directly related to the proposed DRF project. Principal investigators concurrently receiving research support of (>$75,000 per annum research sponsorship) from any other (combined) source(s) are ineligible for DRF support.

Funding of pending awards during the DRF award period may necessitate the return of the balance of DRF award.


1st. YEAR APPLICANTS: Letter of Intent-submit electronically to no later than October 31, 2011, 5 PM. EST.  Application-deadline is December 1, 2011 by 5PM EST.  Visit to apply online. Login is required.  Late applications will not be considered.


2nd. YEAR APPLICANTS: Letter of Intent-submit electronically to no later than December 1, 2011, 5 PM EST.  Application-deadline is January 13, 2012 by 5 PM EST. Visit to apply online. Login is required.  Late applications will not be considered.




The Association for Research in Otolaryngology