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J Neuroinflammation. 2012 Oct 12;9:236. doi: 10.1186/1742-2094-9-236.

New perspectives on central and peripheral immune responses to acute traumatic brain injury.

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Nanomedicine Research Center, University of South Florida Morsani College of Medicine, 12901 Bruce B. Downs Blvd., Tampa, FL 33612, USA.


Traumatic injury to the brain (TBI) results in a complex set of responses involving various symptoms and long-term consequences. TBI of any form can cause cognitive, behavioral and immunologic changes in later life, which underscores the problem of underdiagnosis of mild TBI that can cause long-term neurological deficits. TBI disrupts the blood-brain barrier (BBB) leading to infiltration of immune cells into the brain and subsequent inflammation and neurodegeneration. TBI-induced peripheral immune responses can also result in multiorgan damage. Despite worldwide research efforts, the methods of diagnosis, monitoring and treatment for TBI are still relatively ineffective. In this review, we delve into the mechanism of how TBI-induced central and peripheral immune responses affect the disease outcome and discuss recent developments in the continuing effort to combat the consequences of TBI and new ways to enhance repair of the damaged brain.

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