Cognitive deficits following traumatic brain injury produced by controlled cortical impact.

Research paper by R J RJ Hamm, C E CE Dixon, D M DM Gbadebo, A K AK Singha, L W LW Jenkins, B G BG Lyeth, R L RL Hayes

Indexed on: 01 Jan '92Published on: 01 Jan '92Published in: Journal of neurotrauma


Traumatic brain injury produces significant cognitive deficits in humans. This experiment used a controlled cortical impact model of experimental brain injury to examine the effects of brain injury on spatial learning and memory using the Morris water maze task. Rats (n = 8) were injured at a moderate level of cortical impact injury (6 m/sec, 1.5-2.0 mm deformation). Eight additional rats served as a sham-injured control group. Morris water maze performance was assessed on days 11-15 and 30-34 following injury. Results revealed that brain-injured rats exhibited significant deficits (p less than 0.05) in maze performance at both testing intervals. Since the Morris water maze task is particularly sensitive to hippocampal dysfunction, the results of the present experiment support the hypothesis that the hippocampus is preferentially vulnerable to damage following traumatic brain injury. These results demonstrate that controlled cortical impact brain injury produces enduring cognitive deficits analogous to those observed after human brain injury.