Direct Observation of Low Strain, High Rate Deformation of Cultured Brain Tissue During Primary Blast.
The Veterans Health Administration determined that over 250,000 U.S. service members were diagnosed with a traumatic brain injury (TBI) between 2008 and 2018, of which a great proportion were due to blast exposure. Although the penetrating (secondary) and inertia-driven (tertiary) phases of blast-induced TBI (bTBI) have been studied thoroughly and are known to be injurious, primary blast brain injury has been less studied. We investigated the biomechanics of primary bTBI in our previously developed in vitro shock tube model with a fluid-filled sample receiver. Using stereoscopic, high-speed cameras and digital image correlation (DIC), we mapped the deformation of organotypic hippocampal slice cultures (OHSCs) following a range of blast exposures to characterize the induced strains. As blast exposure increased, tissue strain increased, although the levels remained relatively low (maximum < 9%), with strains rates between 25 and 85 s-1
. Both strain magnitude and rate were highly correlated with the in-air blast impulse and in-fluid peak pressure parameters. Comparing biomechanical parameters to previously reported blast-induced electrophysiological dysfunction, a threshold for deficits in long-term potentiation (LTP) was observed for strains between 3.7 and 6.7% and strain rates between 25 and 33 s-1
. This is the first study to experimentally determine primary blast-induced strain and strain rates in hippocampal tissue.
Vogel, EW; Panzer, MB; Morales, FN; Varghese, N; Bass, CR; Meaney, DF; Morrison, B
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