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BSi Funds Research Initiatives to Expand Traumatic Brain Inquiry Understanding and Interventions

Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine’s Brain Science Institute has just announced the funding of eight grants totaling $1.2 million dollars over a two-year period to fund Traumatic Brain Inquiry: Mechanisms and Treatment.

The Brain Science Institute (BSi) requested applications for support of research in the area of traumatic brain injury (TBI). Public awareness of the pathological consequences of traumatic brain injury has been elevated not only by the recognition of the potential clinical significance of repetitive head injuries in such high-contact sports as American football and boxing, but also by the prevalence of vehicular crashes and efforts to improve passenger safety features, and by modern warfare, especially blast injuries. Each year, more than 1.5 million Americans sustain mild traumatic brain injuries with no loss of consciousness and no need for hospitalization; an equal number sustain injuries sufficient to impair consciousness but insufficiently severe to necessitate long-term institutionalization.

A panel of expert external and internal investigators scored the applications based on innovation, ability to transform the field, and on the formation of new collaborative groups. The BSi also considered applications for individual, collaborative and interlinked (eg program project grants), as well as core ‘infrastructure’ grants.

The awards were given to individual and collaborative investigators in 11 different Departments in 5 Schools throughout the University. These grants will advance the BSi goal to advance our knowledge of traumatic brain injury from mechanisms to treatment. 

The following research programs received awards:

• Oligodendrocyte Injury and Repair Following Repetitive Mild Traumatic Brain Injury
Dwight E. Bergles Ph.D., Visar Belegu Ph.D., Ibolja Cernak M.D.,M.E., Ph.D., Andres Hurtado M.D., Shin Kang Ph.D., John McDonald M.D., Ph.D., Susumu Mori Ph.D., Mikhail Pletnikov Ph.D., Martin Pomper M.D., Ph.D., Peter van Zijl Ph.D.; Departments of Neuroscience, Kennedy Kreiger Institute(KKI), Applied Physics Laboratory, Radiology, Psychiatry, and FM Kirby Center/KKI

• The Center for Quantitative Neuroscience: a core for population euroanalytics and translational systems neuroscience
Brian S. Caffo Ph.D., Ciprian M. Crainiceanu Ph.D., John W. Krakauer M.D., Martin A. Lindquist Ph.D., James J. Pekar Ph.D., Robert D. Stevens M.D.; Departments of Biostatistics, Neurology, KKI/Radiology,  and Anesthesiology and Critical Care Medicine (ACCM)

• TBI Animal Model Core
Raymond C. Koehler Ph.D., Vassilis E. Koliatsos M.D., Courtney L. Robertson M.D., Alena Savonenko M.D. Ph.D.; Departments of ACCM, Psychiatry & Behavioral Sciences, and Pathology

• Long-term plasticity and recovery in pediatric TBI rat model
Galit Pelled Ph.D., Courtney L. Robertson M.D., Raymond Koehler Ph.D.; Departments of Radiology/KKI and ACCM

• Neuroimaging & plasma markers for predicting outcomes after mild traumatic brain injury
Vani Rao M.D., Kathleen B. Kortte Ph.D., Alena Horska Ph.D., Susumu Mori Ph.D., David Yousem M.D., Norman Haughey Ph.D., Allen Everett M.D., Edward Bessman M.D., Ding-Fen Han Ph.D.; Departments of Psychiatry, Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation, Radiology, Neurology, Pediatrics, and Emergency Medicine

• Development and characterization of a novel animal model of inflicted childhood neurotrauma in immature rats
Courtney L. Robertson M.D., Sujatha Kannan M.B.B.S., Vassilis E. Koliatsos M.D., Thierry A.G.M. Huisman M.D., Susumu Mori Ph.D., Allen D. Everett M.D., Melania M. Bembea M.D.;  Departments of ACCM, Pathology, Radiology, and Pediatrics

• “Wake up and walk out”: predicting and tracking recovery from traumatic brain injury
Robert D. Stevens M.D., John W. Krakauer M.D., Steven Yantis Ph.D., Vanessa Raymont M.D.; Departments of ACCM, Neurology, Psychological & Brain Sciences, and Psychiatry & Brain Sciences

• Biomarkers of mild traumatic brain injury in children: predicting outcome and understanding recovery
Stacy Suskauer M.D., Allen D. Everett M.D., Jun Hau Ph.D., C. Jean Ogborn M.D., James J. Pekar Ph.D., Jennifer Reesman Ph.D., Aylin Tekes M.D., Hilary J. Vernon Ph.D.; Departments of KKI/Rehabiliation, Pediatrics, Radiology/KKI, and Psychiatry/KKI

The Johns Hopkins Medicine Brain Science Institute’s (BSi) mission is to solve fundamental questions about brain development and function and to use these insights to understand the mechanisms of brain disease. This new knowledge will provide the catalyst for the facilitation and development of effective therapies.

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