About this Research Topic
In the past decade, traumatic brain injury (TBI) has become a major health concern affecting millions of people worldwide. Of all reported TBIs, the vast majority are classified as mild (m) TBI or concussive. Mild TBI and concussion are often used interchangeably. The American Congress of Rehabilitation Medicine and the Centers of Disease Control and Prevention define mTBI as head trauma that results in a brief loss of consciousness with or without an alteration of mental state. MTBI may lead to long lasting and increasingly severe symptoms.
Currently, the number of injury insults that precipitate development of long-term deficits and the underlying pathobiology of mTBI is not fully known. In addition, diagnostic, prognostic, and therapeutic strategies remain elusive. Therefore, greater understanding of various features, processes, and biomarkers is imperative. In particular, there is a need to determine if mTBI does, in fact, lead to chronic neurological disorders that currently impact the quality of life for our ageing population. These concerns have lead government, military, and athletic organizations as well as academic researchers to initiate studies in an effort to fully characterize, diagnose, and treat mTBI.
The aim of this research topic is three-fold. These aims will encompass pathology and underlying mechanisms, biomarkers, animal models and clinical studies, as well as novel technological approaches. As such, this topic seeks to welcome scientists from various disciplines who address mTBI and neurodegenerative research directly as well as those who seek to apply improved technological approaches to biomarker research, particularly as it relates to analysis of blood.
First, this topic intends to provide evidence of cellular and molecular damage that is similar to neurological diseases, such as Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy or Alzheimer’s disease. This aim may encompass pathological evidence and mechanisms of neurodegeneration and protein aggregation, such as tauopathy. Second, this topic would like to explore possible evidence of clinical and translational biomarkers that potentially correlate to mechanisms of injury or neurobehavioral deficits, such as impaired consciousness and memory. The use of biomarkers to determine experimental therapeutic approaches is encouraged. Third, the use of novel approaches including high-throughput technologies and bioinformatics (even if conceptual) to meet mTBI and neuroscience research related goals may be included. We will also consider a prospective analysis that discusses the future of mTBI research. We therefore encourage researchers to submit papers describing models or clinical studies that might help to elucidate mechanisms and biomarkers of mTBI and concussion.
The views of the authors do not purport or reflect the position of Walter Reed Army Institute of Research or the the Department of the Army or the Department of Defense (para 4-3, AR 360-5).
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