Biomarkers of Spinal Cord Injury
In this project, we will establish biomarkers that objectively reflect the severity of injury, measure its progression, and predict neurologic outcome after acute spinal cord injury (SCI). This will be accomplished by comprehensively analyzing blood and spinal fluid samples from acute SCI patients. In addition, we will conduct a parallel experimental study in a large animal model of SCI with a similar analysis of blood and spinal fluid samples. In addition, we will utilize the large animal model of SCI to establish the changes in blood supply, oxygenation, pressure, and metabolism after injury, in order to measure the progression of secondary damage and predicting (and possibly altering) the neurologic outcome. This work is beneficial to the Rick Hansen Institute as it is closely aligned with their mission to identify, develop, validate, and accelerate the translation of evidence and best practices to reduce the incidence and severity of paralysis after SCI.