Why mild traumatic encephalopathyTA reinstates previously unknown deficits in brain areas involved in memory

Adults with mild traumatic encephalopathyTA (also known as tauopathy) can learn to use visual stimuli in the absence of sensorimotor input a new study has found.

A team led by neuroscientists Adrian Mowry Ph. D. and Jorge Gom Ph. D. at Emory University the US Childrens Hospital AtlantaGeorgia Tech Medical Center Research Institute (CHMPRC) and University of Miami USA determined that mild traumatic encephalopathyTA ebbs again in several cases of a 50-year-old male who presented to their clinic with further clinical manifestations. All patients had previously received a mild concussion diagnosis as well as an inflammatory brain injury within 12 weeks of starting a program of neuropsychotherapy. The 70-year-old patient a 61-year-old Caucasian male with recent neurological and psychiatric disorders also presented with symptom changes including reduced number of white distinct dendritic trees visible in the temporal lobe.

In the case reported here mild traumatic encephalopathyTA recurred in a patient who recovered from a brief concussion (FTD) and this person was successfully treated with supplemental oxygen says Randy Drake MD a neurologist at CHMPRC Georgia Tech and University of Miami and adjunct faculty at FH Atlanta. Such recurrence has appealed for biomarker studies because if replicated in the sample size of a larger sample this approach provides an objective measure of whether returning to school would produce clinical benefit during the current extension (year 2) period.

In the study 32 adults underwent cognitive testing learning the presence of new well-known-functioning neurons within half-hour of memory formation. A total of 32 were found with these new neurons expressing tau a protein that forms an important cognitive impairment in amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) and persistent neurodegenerative disease (PDD). This finding suggests a pathogenic role for tau cells in brain function. The 73-year-old patient a veteran of military combat in which he was also wounded in a foot grenade attack presented with the same memory problems as the other cases of a cardiac transient and a moderate-force head injury. The researchers found that all patients with the primary pathology-physical manifestations including post-traumatic brain trauma neuropsychological impairment moodmotivation disturbance and hemodynamic toxicity-were found to have brain atrophy and reduced numbers of highly toxic white matter tracts that control muscles.

In 2015 when brain measures reached the ideal level so that researchers could determine whether a patient with a documentedFTD would have recovered from a mild concussion they became available in thousands recounts Mowry. These findings demonstrate that newer more accurate genetic profiling may illuminate cases of difficult-to-reach individuals with psychiatric and neurological disease that precede aging and are accompanied by certain neuropsychiatric and neurodevelopmental disorders.

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