Research Reports - Genetic risk factors for sustaining a mild traumatic brain injury

J Neurotrauma. 2017 Feb 27. doi: 10.1089/neu.2016.4833. [Epub ahead of print]

Panenka WJ(1), Gardner AJ(2), Dretsch MN(3), Crynen GC(4), Crawford FC(4),
Iverson GL(5,)(6).

This systematic review examined the association between genetics and risk for
sustaining a traumatic brain injury. We retrieved articles published in English
from 1980 to July 2016 obtained from the online databases PubMed, PsycINFO(®),
MEDLINE(®), Embase, and Web of Science. In total 5903 articles were identified,
77 underwent full-text screening, and 6 were included in this review. Five
studies examined the risk of concussion associated with apolipoprotein E alleles
(APOE-ɛ2, ɛ3,ɛ4), and polymorphisms of the APOE promoter (rs405509), brain
derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF, rs6265), and dopamine receptor D2 (DRD2,
rs1800497) were each considered in two studies. Microtubule associated protein
tau (TAU exon 6 polymorphisms His47Tyr [rs2258689] and Ser53Pro [rs10445337]),
and neurofilament heavy (NEHF, rs165602) genotypic variants, were the focus of
single studies. No study showed an increased risk associated solely with the
presence of the APOE-ɛ4 allele, nor were there any significant findings for the
NEFH, TAU, or DRD2 genotypic variants. Two studies examined the APOE promoter
-219G/T polymorphism in athletes, and both found an association with concussion.
Both BDNF studies also found a significant association with concussion incidence;
United States soldiers with the Met/Met genotype were more likely to report a
history of concussion prior to deployment and to sustain a concussion during
deployment. We conclude that the APOE promoter -219G/T polymorphism and the BDNF
Met/Met genotype might confer risk for sustaining a TBI. Based on research to
date, the APOE-ɛ4 allele does not appear to influence risk. More research is
needed to determine if these findings replicate. 

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