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Front Neurol. 2013 Jan 17;3:186. doi: 10.3389/fneur.2012.00186. eCollection 2012.

Repetitive traumatic brain injury and development of chronic traumatic encephalopathy: a potential role for biomarkers in diagnosis, prognosis, and treatment?

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  • 1Department of Neurosurgery, School of Medicine, West Virginia University Morgantown, WV, USA ; Center for Neuroscience, School of Medicine, West Virginia University Morgantown, WV, USA.

Abstract

The diagnosis of chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE) upon autopsy in a growing number of athletes and soldiers alike has resulted in increased awareness, by both the scientific/medical and lay communities, of the potential for lasting effects of repetitive traumatic brain injury. While the scientific community has come to better understand the clinical presentation and underlying pathophysiology of CTE, the diagnosis of CTE remains autopsy-based, which prevents adequate monitoring and tracking of the disease. The lack of established biomarkers or imaging modalities for diagnostic and prognostic purposes also prevents the development and implementation of therapeutic protocols. In this work the clinical history and pathologic findings associated with CTE are reviewed, as well as imaging modalities that have demonstrated some promise for future use in the diagnosis and/or tracking of CTE or repetitive brain injury. Biomarkers under investigation are also discussed with particular attention to the timing of release and potential utility in situations of repetitive traumatic brain injury. Further investigation into imaging modalities and biomarker elucidation for the diagnosis of CTE is clearly both needed and warranted.

KEYWORDS:

CTE; TBI; biomarkers; chronic traumatic encephalopathy; imaging

PMID:
23335911
PMCID:
PMC3547169
DOI:
10.3389/fneur.2012.00186
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