A novel mouse model of penetrating brain injury.
Journal article, 2014
Penetrating traumatic brain injury (pTBI) has been difficult to model in small laboratory animals, such as rats or mice. Previously, we have established a non-fatal, rat model for pTBI using a modified air-rifle that accelerates a pellet, which hits a small probe that then penetrates the experimental animal's brain. Knockout and transgenic strains of mice offer attractive tools to study biological reactions induced by TBI. Hence, in the present study, we adapted and modified our model to be used with mice. The technical characterization of the impact device included depth and speed of impact, as well as dimensions of the temporary cavity formed in a brain surrogate material after impact. Biologically, we have focused on three distinct levels of severity (mild, moderate, and severe), and characterized the acute phase response to injury in terms of tissue destruction, neural degeneration, and gliosis. Functional outcome was assessed by measuring bodyweight and motor performance on rotarod. The results showed that this model is capable of reproducing major morphological and neurological changes of pTBI; as such, we recommend its utilization in research studies aiming to unravel the biological events underlying injury and regeneration after pTBI.