Blast injury produced by improvised explosive devices in combat and/or exposures to multiples mild blasts during training has emerged as risk factors for chronic functional deficits. These include deficits in cognition and stress-associated behavioral pathologies. To investigate the mechanisms of these negative outcomes and to develop new therapies, a variety of preclinical models of blast have been developed. Like models of non-blast traumatic brain injury (TBI), the measurement of functional deficits is a key link towards clinical translation. The primary objective of this session is to update clinical and basic science researchers on the state-of-the-science of functional outcome testing in preclinical models of experimental blast. In this session, leading experts will discuss the relevance of functional outcome tests to military and civilian blast, contrast functional outcomes responses with other preclinical TBI models, describe the key blast-related injury parameters needed to produce function deficits, describe the effects of repeated mild blasts, and discuss physiological correlates of mild blast injury.
At the conclusion of this session, attendees will be able to:
1. Describe the preclinical blast models that are being utilized to study functional outcomes.
2. Define the persistent neurobehavioral outcomes produced by experimental blast models.
3. Describe the effects of repeated low-level blasts on functional outcome.
4. Describe the cerebrovascular correlates of functional deficits after blast-induced TBI