A recent study reports that scientists have pinpointed a panel of microRNAs, which can be used to diagnose mild traumatic brain injury (mTBI). During the study, Radha K. Maheshwari, PhD, professor of Pathology at the military’s Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences (USU), along with his team, including Drs Anuj Sharma, Raghavendar Chandran, Erin S Barry, Manish Bhomia, Mary Anne Hutchison, Nagaraja S. Balakathiresan, and Neil E Grunberg, investigated the changes in blood microRNAs in response to various intensities of brain injury resulting in mTBI.

A news release from USU reports that the scientists identified a unique and specific group of microRNAs that were detected in blood immediately following injury to the brain. The study results indicate that the microRNAs can be measured in the blood as proxies for mTBI. The release adds that the microRNA panel revealed in this study does not overlap with blood microRNAs of posttraumatic stress disorder, as reported in a study by Maheshwari and his team published earlier this year in the Journal of Psychiatric Research.

Maheshwari designates the study’s results as a “step forward in identifying objective biomarkers for mTBI that may be further validated to accurately and cost-effectively identify mTBI in service members and civilians with brain injuries. Our current effort is to identify the precise role these microRNAs play in mTBI which may help in development of mTBI therapies.”

[Source(s): Newswise, Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences (USU)]