US Army identifies six critical research targets for improving outcomes in traumatic brain injury

January 6, 2014
©2014 Mary Ann Liebert, Inc., publishers

The U.S. Department of Defense funds more than 500 neurotrauma research projects totaling over $700 million. Yet there remains a large unmet medical need for effective treatments of traumatic brain injury (TBI), a major cause of disability and mortality. The U.S. Army's new strategic research plan for developing improved drug therapies for TBI is published in Journal of Neurotrauma.

The U.S. Army Medical Research and Materiel Command (USAMRMC) established the Neurotrauma Pharmacology Workgroup to develop a strategic research plan that identifies the most critical research priority areas with the goal of improving patient outcomes after TBI.

The Workgroup's report, "Pharmacotherapy of Traumatic Brain Injury: State of the Science and the Road Forward, Report of the Department of Defense Neurotrauma Pharmacology Workgroup", was coauthored by Ramon Diaz-Arrastia and Kimbra Kenney, Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences (Bethesda, MD); Patrick Kochanek, University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine (PA); Peter Bergold, SUNY Downstate Medical Center (Brooklyn, NY); Christine Marx, Duke University Medical Center and Durham VA Medical Center (NC); Jamie Grimes, Defense and Veterans Brain Injury Center (Silver Spring, MD); Yince Loh, Madigan Army Medical Center (Tacoma, WA); Gina Adam, Kenneth Curley, and Wanda Salzer, U.S. Army MRMC (Ft. Detrick, MD); and Devon Oskvig (Rockville, MD).

John T. Povlishock, PhD, Editor-in-Chief of Journal of Neurotrauma and Professor, VCU Neuroscience Center, Medical College of Virginia, Richmond, notes that "although some of the themes advanced in this manuscript are not entirely new, the report helps to refocus current thought on those most critical research priority areas in the field of TBI pharmacological intervention. Additionally, the accompanying text addressing the current state of preclinical and clinical drug assessment will be an interesting read for all involved in this field of discovery."

Explore further: Can traumatic brain injury impair a child's working memory?

More information: The article is available free on the Journal of Neurotrauma website at

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