Plasma Tau Levels in Concussed Hockey Players

2013 Neuroscience, San Diego, CA

Jeffrey Randall,1 David H Wilson,1 Pashtun Shahim,2 K. Minnehan1, M. Gardel1, B. Pink1, L. York1, S. Sullivan1, R. Meyer1, B. Flaherty1, C. Jacques1, Birgitta Kallberg,3 Yelverton Tegner,4Kaj Blennow,2 Henrik Zetterberg2,5

1Quanterix Corporation, Cambridge, MA;2Department of Psychiatry and Neurochemistry, the Sahlgrenska Academy at the University of Gothenburg, Mölndal, Sweden; 3Clinical Chemistry Laboratory, Sahlgrenska University Hospital, Mölndal, Sweden; 4Department of Health Sciences, Luleå University of Technology, Luelå, Sweden; 5UCL Institute of Neurology, Queen Square, London WC1N 3BG, United Kingdom.

Background:  Convenient biomarker assessment of mild to severe sports-related traumatic brain injury represents a desirable goal as an adjunct for assessing severity of injury and fitness to return to play.  Methods for measuring the brain protein tau in serum and plasma have, until recently, been unavailable.   Currently, highly sensitive measurement of peripheral total tau is now available.  In this pilot study, we examined plasma total tau levels in professional hockey players who had suffered a sports-related concussion.  Post-concussion plasma tau levels were followed over approximately six days, and were compared with tau levels in a cohort of hockey players prior to the start of the hockey season.