An exploratory study on the association between blood-based biomarkers and subacute neurometabolic changes following mild traumatic brain injury

Koen Visser, Myrthe E. de Koning, Diana Ciubotariu, Marius J. G. Kok, Anita J. Sibeijn-Kuiper, Arno R. Bourgonje, Harry van Goor, Joukje van der Naalt, Harm Jan van der Horn*

*Bijbehorende auteur voor dit werk

OnderzoeksoutputAcademicpeer review


Background and objectives
Blood-based biomarkers and advanced neuroimaging modalities such as magnetic resonance spectroscopy (MRS) or diffusion tensor imaging (DTI) have enhanced our understanding of the pathophysiology of mild traumatic brain injury (mTBI). However, there is limited published data on how blood biomarkers relate to neuroimaging biomarkers post-mTBI.

To investigate this, 30 patients with mTBI and 21 healthy controls were enrolled. Data was collected at two timepoints postinjury: acute, < 24 h, (blood) and subacute, four-to-six weeks, (blood and imaging). Interleukin (IL) 6 and 10 (inflammation), free thiols (systemic oxidative stress) and neurofilament light (NF-L) (axonal injury) were quantified in plasma. The neurometabolites total N-acetyl aspartate (tNAA) (neuronal energetics), Myo-Inositol (Ins) and total Choline (tCh) (inflammation) and, Glutathione (GSH, oxidative stress) were quantified using MRS.

Concentrations of IL-6 and IL-10 were significantly elevated in the acute phase post-mTBI, while NF-L was elevated only in the subacute phase. Total NAA was lowered in patients with mTBI, although this difference was only nominally significant (uncorrected P < 0.05). Within the patient group, acute IL-6 and subacute tNAA levels were negatively associated (r =  − 0.46, uncorrected-P = 0.01), albeit not at a threshold corrected for multiple testing (corrected-P = 0.17). When age was added as a covariate a significant increase in correlation magnitude was observed (ρ =  − 0.54, corrected-P = 0.03).

This study demonstrates potential associations between the intensity of the inflammatory response in the acute phase post-mTBI and neurometabolic perturbations in the subacute phase. Future studies should assess the longitudinal dynamics of blood-based and imaging biomarkers after injury.
Originele taal-2English
Pagina's (van-tot)1985-1998
Aantal pagina's14
TijdschriftJournal of Neurology
Nummer van het tijdschrift4
Vroegere onlinedatum29-dec.-2023
StatusPublished - apr.-2024

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