Proteolytic Biomarkers MAP Brain Damage Detection Sunday, Dec 14 2008 

Banyan Biomarkers is a company that creates products to help diagnose those who are brain injured. They have recently been granted a new US patent by the US Patent and Trademark Office. The patent is for proteolytic biomarkers that will be used for the detection of traumatic brain injuries. The patent itself describes a novel method of determining brain injuries. This determination would be done by the use of proteolytic breakdown products of MAP’s. MAP’s are microtubule-associated proteins. These MAP’s will allow better detection of traumatic brain injuries and may increasingly find use in the future. Currently many different types of brain injuries are fairly difficult to detect even with sophisticated brain scanning. Subtle types of brain damage especially to the axons and dendrites of neurons can be difficult to spot. It wouldn’t show up as a gross morphology change on an MRI or CT scan. However these proteolytic proteins have the ability to detect more subtle forms of brain injury. They also may diagnose brain injury faster than other methods. This would allow the administration of treatment at a quicker rate. This could reduce the damaging after effects of a traumatic brain insult.

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Brain Injury Detection Magnetoencephalography Diffusion Tensor Imaging Sunday, Nov 30 2008 

Mild traumatic brain injury impacts the lives of nearly 1.4 million americans each and every year. This is an astoundingly high number. Nearly 20% of soldiers also may suffer from mild traumatic brain injury.

A new article has come out in the USA Today that talks about brain injuries and their detection. It says that mild brain injuries are now easier for doctors to actually detect. Previously some forms of mild damage may have gone unnoticed even with a brain scan. The article talks about research that was presented at the society for Neuroscience annual meeting.

The researchers are now able to combine a variety of advanced brain imaging techniques. These include magnetoencephalography (MEG) and diffusion tensor imaging (DTI). Using these techniques researchers were able to detect some forms of conventional brain injuries that CT or MRI scans had previously missed. These types of scans are more sensitive in detecting very subtle injuries. The USA today story can be found here.