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Virginia Tech Researchers Get $1M to Further Develop Concussion Test

NEW YORK (360Dx) – Virginia Tech Carilion Research Institute announced today it has been awarded $500,000 by Virginia Catalyst to continue development and eventual commercialization of a multimodality system approach for diagnosing and managing mild traumatic brain injury, commonly known as a concussion.

Additionally, BrainBox Solutions, a part of molecular diagnostic firm ImmunArray and an industry partner to the VTCRI project, is matching the award with an additional $500,000 for the project, which aims to develop a blood-based test for the point-of-care setting.

ImmunArray has a portfolio of biomarkers for TBI, and the VTCRI team will collaborate with researchers from the University of Virginia to refine BrainBox's biomarker technology and its multimodality system. As part of that work, University of Virginia Health System scientists will run parallel diagnostic blood tests, neuroimaging, and neuropsychological studies.

Ultimately, the work is expected to reveal "what the brain is doing functionally in the context of results from neurocognitive testing and the profile of blood-borne biomarkers that reflect the injury and restoration processes under way in the brain," VTCRI said in a statement.

Earlier this year the US Food and Drug Administration allowed Banyan Biomarkers to market a blood test to evaluate mild traumatic brain injuries. The company's test measures levels of the UCH-L1 and GFAP proteins that are released into the blood following head injury.