, Volume 2, Issue 4, pp 533-545
Date: 10 Nov 2011

A Neurovascular Perspective for Long-Term Changes After Brain Trauma

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Abstract

Traumatic brain injury (TBI) affects all age groups in a population and is an injury generating scientific interest not only as an acute event, but also as a complex brain disease with several underlying neurobehavioral and neuropathological characteristics. We review early and long-term alterations after juvenile and adult TBI with a focus on changes in the neurovascular unit, including neuronal interactions with glia and blood vessels at the blood–brain barrier (BBB). Post-traumatic changes in cerebral blood flow, BBB structures and function, as well as mechanistic pathways associated with brain aging and neurodegeneration are presented from clinical and experimental reports. Based on the literature, increased attention on BBB changes should be integrated in studies characterizing TBI outcome and may provide a meaningful therapeutic target to resolve detrimental post-traumatic dysfunction.