Traumatic brain injury is a major source of global disability and mortality. Preclinical TBI models are a crucial component of therapeutic investigation. We report a tunable, monitored model of murine non-surgical, diffuse closed-head injury - modCHIMERA - characterized by impact as well as linear and rotational acceleration. modCHIMERA is based on the Closed-Head Impact Model of Engineered Rotational Acceleration (CHIMERA) platform. We tested this model at 2 energy levels: 1.7 and 2.1 Joules - substantially higher than previously reported for this system. Kinematic analysis demonstrated linear acceleration exceeding injury thresholds in humans, although outcome metrics tracked impact energy more closely than kinematic parameters. Acute severity metrics were consistent with a complicated-mild or moderate TBI, a clinical population characterized by high morbidity but potentially reversible pathology. Axonal injury was multifocal and bilateral, neuronal death was detected in the hippocampus, and microglial neuroinflammation was prominent. Acute functional analysis revealed prolonged post-injury unconsciousness, and decreased spontaneous behavior and stimulated neurological scores. Neurobehavioral deficits were demonstrated in spatial learning/memory and socialization at 1-month. The overall injury profile of modCHIMERA corresponds with the range responsible for a substantial portion of TBI-related disability in humans. modCHIMERA should provide a reliable platform for efficient analysis of TBI pathophysiology and testing of treatment modalities.

Original languageEnglish
Article number7677
JournalScientific reports
Issue number1
StatePublished - Dec 1 2018


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