Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) is currently a leading cause of death and disability in individuals under the age of 45 years. The incidence of TBI is particularly high in people during the most productive years of their lives and often results in prolonged or life-long impairments in cognition and personality. TBI has also recently been implicated in the development of other disorders, such as Alzheimer’s disease and post-truamatic epilepsy, further intensifying the burden of this condition from a medical, social and economical perspective. Currently there are no effective therapeutic interventions for the consequences of TBI. The major reason for this is the complexity of TBI, which is more considered an instantaneous irreversible event occurring at the time of injury.
Dr Staal has developed a unique and well accepted cell culture method of reliably reproducing the full spectrum of clinical changes associated with secondary degeneration following TBI. Thus, we are now well placed to provide important mechanistic insights into the underlying cause of TBI, providing also a technology platform for investigating new therapautic approaches.