Preservation of general intelligence following traumatic brain injury: Contributions of the Met66 brain-derived neurotrophic factor

Aron K. Barbey, Roberto Colom, Erick Paul, Chad Forbes, Frank Krueger, David Goldman, Jordan Henry Grafman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

21 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) promotes survival and synaptic plasticity in the human brain. The Val66Met polymorphism of the BDNF gene interferes with intracellular trafficking, packaging, and regulated secretion of this neurotrophin. The human prefrontal cortex (PFC) shows lifelong neuroplastic adaption implicating the Val66Met BDNF polymorphism in the recovery of higher-order executive functions after traumatic brain injury (TBI). In this study, we examined the effect of this BDNF polymorphism on the preservation of general intelligence following TBI. We genotyped a sample of male Vietnam combat veterans (n = 156) consisting of a frontal lobe lesion group with focal penetrating head injuries for the Val66Met BDNF polymorphism. Val/Met did not differ from Val/Val genotypes in general cognitive ability before TBI. However, we found substantial average differences between these groups in general intelligence (≈ half a standard deviation or 8 IQ points), verbal comprehension (6 IQ points), perceptual organization (6 IQ points), working memory (8 IQ points), and processing speed (8 IQ points) after TBI. These results support the conclusion that Val/Met genotypes preserve general cognitive functioning, whereas Val/Val genotypes are largely susceptible to TBI.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numbere88733
JournalPloS one
Volume9
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Feb 26 2014

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neurotrophins
Brain-Derived Neurotrophic Factor
Intelligence
Brain
Polymorphism
brain
Genotype
Penetrating Head Injuries
genetic polymorphism
Neuronal Plasticity
Aptitude
Vietnam
Executive Function
Nerve Growth Factors
Frontal Lobe
Veterans
Product Packaging
Prefrontal Cortex
Short-Term Memory
genotype

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
  • Agricultural and Biological Sciences(all)

Cite this

Barbey, Aron K. ; Colom, Roberto ; Paul, Erick ; Forbes, Chad ; Krueger, Frank ; Goldman, David ; Grafman, Jordan Henry. / Preservation of general intelligence following traumatic brain injury : Contributions of the Met66 brain-derived neurotrophic factor. In: PloS one. 2014 ; Vol. 9, No. 2.
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Preservation of general intelligence following traumatic brain injury : Contributions of the Met66 brain-derived neurotrophic factor. / Barbey, Aron K.; Colom, Roberto; Paul, Erick; Forbes, Chad; Krueger, Frank; Goldman, David; Grafman, Jordan Henry.

In: PloS one, Vol. 9, No. 2, e88733, 26.02.2014.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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