Traumatic brain injury (TBI) is associated with high mortality and morbidity in children and adults. Unfortunately, there is no effective management for TBI in the acute setting. Rodent studies have shown that xenon, a well-known anesthetic gas, can be neuroprotective when administered post-TBI. Gas inhalation therapy, however, the approach typically used for administering xenon, is expensive, inconvenient, and fraught with systemic side effects. Therapeutic delivery to the brain is minimal, with much of the inhaled gas cleared by the lungs. To bridge major gaps in clinical care and enhance cerebral delivery of xenon, this study introduces a novel xenon delivery technique, utilizing microbubbles, in which a high impulse ultrasound signal is used for targeted cerebral release of xenon. Briefly, an ultrasound pulse is applied along the carotid artery at the level of the neck on intravenous injection of xenon microbubbles (XeMBs) resulting in release of xenon from microbubbles into the brain. This delivery technique employs a hand-held, portable ultrasound system that could be adopted in resource-limited environments. Using a high-fidelity porcine model, this study demonstrates the neuroprotective efficacy of xenon microbubbles in TBI for the first time.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Developmental Neuroscience
- Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience
- traumatic brain injury