Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Better management of traumatic brain injury

Date:
July 19, 2012
Source:
Monash University
Summary:
New treatments to lessen the severity of the more than 21,000 traumatic brain injury cases that occur in Australia each year are on the horizon.

New treatments to lessen the severity of the more than 21,000 Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) cases that occur in Australia each year are on the horizon.

Related Articles


Published July 19 in the journal, Brain, a study led by researchers from Monash University's Australian Centre for Blood Diseases (ACBD) revealed how inhibiting certain enzymes decreased the severity of TBI, providing a target for future treatments.

Caused by a blow to the head, often suffered during falls or road crashes, severe TBI can result in long-term disability or death. Effects can include impairments to cognitive and motor function, vision, hearing and emotional regulation. Additionally, the post-injury disruption to blood flow, oxygen supply and nerve function around the brain has been linked to debilitating diseases including Alzheimer's disease and post-traumatic epilepsy.

The study was led by Professor Robert Medcalf and Dr Maithili Sashindranath of the ACBD, who collaborated for five years with scientists at the University of Geneva in Switzerland and the University of Michigan in the United States.

Professor Medcalf said the researchers identified two enzymes, known as t-PA and MMP-3, that act together to promote injury severity following TBI.

"The enzyme t-PA, well known for its ability to remove blood clots, also has a healthy and very important role in supporting learning and memory functions in everyday life. However, previous research has shown that in TBI cases, its presence makes the injury much worse," Professor Medcalf said.

Initially, the researchers thought t-PA itself exacerbated the injury. However, a surprising finding of the study was that t-PA is not the culprit -- its inhibition triggers the activation of MMP-3, the enzyme which does the damage.

"The activity of naturally occurring enyzmes is controlled by specific enzyme inhibitors," Professor Medcalf said.

"Unexpectedly, we found that the process of t-PA inactivation by one of its natural inhibitors actually contributed to brain injury, because it leads to the activation of MMP-3.

"Now we know that if we block MMP-3 with an inhibitor, we can protect the brain following TBI," Professor Medcalf said.

Co-author and international expert on TBI, Professor Jeffrey Rosenfeld, from Monash University's Department of Surgery said the results were exciting.

"We now have a new and promising therapeutic target for the treatment of human TBI, which has not, so far, been significantly improved by pharmacological intervention," Professor Rosenfeld said.

Research is continuing with the aim of bringing this finding to a point where clinical trials can evaluate this novel approach in patients with TBI.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Monash University. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Monash University. "Better management of traumatic brain injury." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 19 July 2012. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/07/120719212739.htm>.
Monash University. (2012, July 19). Better management of traumatic brain injury. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 30, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/07/120719212739.htm
Monash University. "Better management of traumatic brain injury." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/07/120719212739.htm (accessed October 30, 2014).

Share This



More Mind & Brain News

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Techy Tots Are Forefront of London's Baby Show

Techy Tots Are Forefront of London's Baby Show

AP (Oct. 28, 2014) Moms and Dads get a more hands-on approach to parenting with tech-centric products for raising their little ones. (Oct. 28) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Cocoa Could Be As Good For Memory As It Is For A Sweet Tooth

Cocoa Could Be As Good For Memory As It Is For A Sweet Tooth

Newsy (Oct. 27, 2014) Researchers have come up with another reason why dark chocolate is good for your health. A substance in the treat can reportedly help with memory. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Five-Year-Olds Learn Coding as Britain Eyes Digital Future

Five-Year-Olds Learn Coding as Britain Eyes Digital Future

AFP (Oct. 27, 2014) Coding has become compulsory for children as young as five in schools across the UK. Making it the first major world economy to overhaul its IT teaching and put programming at its core. Duration: 02:19 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Academic Scandal Shocks UNC

Academic Scandal Shocks UNC

AP (Oct. 23, 2014) A scandal involving bogus classes and inflated grades at the University of North Carolina was bigger than previously reported, a new investigation found. (Oct. 23) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins