Blast exposure results in tau and neurofilament light chain changes in peripheral blood

Katie A. Edwards, Jacqueline J. Leete, Anna E. Tschiffely, Candace Y. Moore, Kristine C. Dell, Jonathan K. Statz, Walter Carr, Peter B. Walker, Matthew L. LoPresti, Stephen T. Ahlers, Angela M. Yarnell, Jessica Gill*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

11 Scopus citations

Abstract

Objectives: To evaluate how blast exposure impacts peripheral biomarkers in military personnel enrolled in 10-day blast training. Methods: On day 7, 21 military personnel experienced peak overpressure <2 pounds per square inch (psi); while 29 military personnel experienced peak overpressure ≥5 psi. Blood samples were collected each day to measure changes in amyloid beta (Aβ), neurofilament light chain (NFL), and tau concentrations. Results: Within 24 hours following exposure ≥5 psi, the ≥5 psi group had lower Aβ42 (p = .004) and NFL (p < .001) compared to the <2 psi group and lower Aβ42 (9.35%) and NFL (22.01%) compared to baseline. Twenty-four hours after ≥5 psi exposure, the ≥5 psi group had lower tau (p < .001) and NFL (p < .001) compared to the <2 psi group and baseline. Seventy-two hours after exposure ≥5 psi, tau increased in the ≥5 psi group compared to the <2 psi group (p = .02) and baseline. The tau:Aβ42 ratio 24 hours after blast (p = .012), and the Aβ40:Aβ42 ratio 48 hours after blast (p = .04) differed in the ≥5 psi group compared to the <2 psi group. Conclusions: These findings provide an initial report of acute alterations in biomarker concentrations following blast exposure.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1213-1221
Number of pages9
JournalBrain Injury
Volume34
Issue number9
DOIs
StatePublished - 28 Jul 2020
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Blast exposure
  • military
  • neurofilament light chain (NFL)
  • peripheral biomarkers
  • tau

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