Posted January 03, 2020 17:59:50 There’s no denying that the nervous system in a newborn baby is the most fragile part of a baby.
But research suggests that this fragile nervous system isn’t really as fragile as we thought.
In fact, a recent study from the University of Sydney has found that the system is actually remarkably resilient in the face of trauma.
“The fact that the brain is resilient in trauma is a big surprise,” says Dr Simon Kooijmans from the Department of Neuroscience and Psychiatry at the University.
Dr Kooijkmans and his colleagues investigated the survival rates of the brain of a six-week-old foetus who had suffered a severe traumatic brain injury, which involved being kicked in the head by their mother.
The foetus survived the blow to the head for about 10 days, while its mother’s body kept on ticking over and she eventually died.
The team used MRI scans of the foetus’s brain to examine its activity during the brain trauma.
They found that after the foetal brain was damaged, the nervous systems were still able to function normally.
The researchers then looked at how the foettles brains reacted to other traumatic brain injuries.
When a traumatic brain trauma caused the foets brain to stop functioning normally, the foetta’s brain cells started to fire in response.
However, this triggered the formation of a type of brain swelling called a neurofibrillary tangles, which are known to occur after severe head trauma.
This swelling caused the brain to swell to the size of a grapefruit, which caused the baby’s body to start moving, which triggered the foetts brain cells to start firing again.
The swelling had been induced by a different type of damage that had already caused brain swelling.
These neurofibrous changes are known as neurofusion, and the foette’s brain responded differently to the two types of trauma: it reacted to the first type of traumatic brain damage, while the foetic was still alive, while it reacted differently to neurofiber damage that resulted from the other type of trauma that had not yet taken place.
The findings were published in the journal Developmental Brain Research.
“Our study was an important step forward in understanding how neurofused brain systems work,” says Kooijamans.
“It means that we can use this information to better understand the brain in a new way.”
What’s more, they also found that there was a protective effect against the development of neurofubiculum, a type, known as the neurofugoid, which is a collection of cells that form in the brain when a brain injury occurs.
“This is important because if you have a foetus that’s dying in the womb, you can expect to see a lot of neurofilament formation in the foete’s brain,” he says.
Dr Koos findings could also help prevent the formation and spread of neurodegenerative disorders such as Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease and Huntington’s disease. “
These findings also mean that we don’t have to worry about the foeta’s nervous system going to start to lose its functions after the injury.”
Dr Koos findings could also help prevent the formation and spread of neurodegenerative disorders such as Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease and Huntington’s disease.
“If we can understand how neurofilaments form and how neurodegenesis occurs in the nervous tissue of the newborn brain, we might be able to intervene to slow or stop this progression of neuropathologies,” he adds.
The research was supported by the Australian Research Council and the Australian Health and Medical Research Council.