Editors' Note: Exosomal Neurofilament Light: A Prognostic Biomarker for Remote Symptoms After Mild Traumatic Brain Injury?

In attempt to identify more sensitive biomarkers of neurologic injury and posttraumatic cognitive dysfunction, the Chronic Effects of Neurotrauma Consortium (CENC) investigators evaluated the relationship between traumatic brain injury (TBI) and exosomal and plasma neurofilament light chains. Levels of both biomarkers were elevated among patients with more frequent TBI events and strongly correlated with more significant neuropsychiatric disease—including symptoms of depression, posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), and cognitive impairment. Dr. Kawada comments that other biomarkers, such as exosomal tau, correlate strongly with a variety of neurocognitive consequences of TBI, whereas biomarkers such as IL-10 may better correlate with PTSD. The CENC investigators agree that a serial pattern of biomarkers may one day be an indicator of a particular neuropsychiatric condition, but larger validation studies are necessary in the meantime.

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