This gene encodes a protein that is associated with the hair bundle of the sensory hair cells in the inner ear. The hair bundle is composed of stiff microvilli called stereocilia and is involved with mechanoreception of sound waves. This gene is part of a tandem duplication on chromosome 15; the second copy is a pseudogene. Mutations in this gene cause autosomal recessive non-syndromic deafness.
^Verpy E, Masmoudi S, Zwaenepoel I, Leibovici M, Hutchin TP, Del Castillo I, Nouaille S, Blanchard S, Laine S, Popot JL, Moreno F, Mueller RF, Petit C (Nov 2001). "Mutations in a new gene encoding a protein of the hair bundle cause non-syndromic deafness at the DFNB16 locus". Nat Genet. 29 (3): 345–9. doi:10.1038/ng726. PMID11687802.