Our previous research showed that traumatic brain injury (TBI) induced by controlled cortical impact (CCI) not only causes massive cell death, but also results in extensive dendrite degeneration in those spared neurons in the cortex. Cell death and dendrite degeneration in the cortex may contribute to persistent cognitive, sensory, and motor dysfunction. There is still no approach available to prevent cells from death and dendrites from degeneration following TBI. When we treated the animals with a small molecule, 7,8-dihydroxyflavone (DHF) that mimics the function of brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) through provoking TrkB activation reduced dendrite swellings in the cortex. DHF treatment also prevented dendritic spine loss after TBI. Functional analysis showed that DHF improved rotarod performance on the third day after surgery. These results suggest that although DHF treatment did not significantly reduced neuron death, it prevented dendrites from degenerating and protected dendritic spines against TBI insult. Consequently, DHF can partially improve the behavior outcomes after TBI.
- Brain-derived neurotrophic factor
- Traumatic brain injury
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience