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Year : 2017  |  Volume : 3  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 135-142

Neuroinflammation in traumatic brain injury: A chronic response to an acute injury

1 Center of Excellence for Aging and Brain, Tampa, FL, USA
2 School of Medicine, University of Miami School of Medicine, Miami, FL, USA

Correspondence Address:
Diego Lozano
University of Miami School of Medicine, Miami, FL
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/bc.bc_18_17

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Every year, approximately 1.4 million US citizens visit emergency rooms for traumatic brain injuries. Formerly known as an acute injury, chronic neurodegenerative symptoms such as compromised motor skills, decreased cognitive abilities, and emotional and behavioral changes have caused the scientific community to consider chronic aspects of the disorder. The injury causing impact prompts multiple cell death processes, starting with neuronal necrosis, and progressing to various secondary cell death mechanisms. Secondary cell death mechanisms, including excitotoxicity, oxidative stress, mitochondrial dysfunction, blood–brain barrier disruption, and inflammation accompany chronic traumatic brain injury (TBI) and often contribute to long-term disabilities. One hallmark of both acute and chronic TBI is neuroinflammation. In acute stages, neuroinflammation is beneficial and stimulates an anti-inflammatory response to the damage. Conversely, in chronic TBI, excessive inflammation stimulates the aforementioned secondary cell death. Converting inflammatory cells from pro-inflammatory to anti-inflammatory may expand the therapeutic window for treating TBI, as inflammation plays a role in all stages of the injury. By expanding current research on the role of inflammation in TBI, treatment options and clinical outcomes for afflicted individuals may improve. This paper is a review article. Referred literature in this paper has been listed in the references section. The data sets supporting the conclusions of this article are available online by searching various databases, including PubMed. Some original points in this article come from the laboratory practice in our research center and the authors' experiences.

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