Research Highlights

The Brain Trauma Foundation leads the way in cutting-edge clinical research on TBI. Improving diagnosis and treatment of TBI requires a focus on clinical research. The Foundation’s mission is to translate neuroscience into effective solutions. BTF’s research spans the spectrum from concussion to coma. BTF is conducting innovative research into the cause diagnosis of concussion.   Also, BTF develops Best TBI Practice Guidelines, which can significantly improve a patient’s outcome when followed.

The Foundation is currently conducting studies and leading consortiums of investigators from multiple universities and disciplines in many TBI research areas that will have immediate impact on patient outcomes.



The BTF is currently working with the United States Department of Defense to develop a goggle eye tracking device to be used by the military to detect concussion and measure a soldier’s ability to pay attention. This new technology assesses the brain attention in 30 seconds and will also be used in the future to assess sports concussions.

Attention Dynamics Consortium in TBI

A multi-institutional research consortium seeking to understand the neurobiology of attention that can lead to common mild TBI symptoms. The novel aspects of this consortium are the measurement of damage to brain connections using new imaging techniques and comparing this to functional changes in neurophysiology and behavior using advanced imaging techniques, and in correlating behavioral performance using eye-tracking variability as a metric of attention.

Concussion Publications

A unified science of concussion

Visual Tracking Synchronization as a Metric for Concussion Screening

Increased oculomotor deficits during Target blanking as an indicator of mild traumatic brain injury

Deficits in predictive smooth pursuit after mild traumatic brain injury

New ways to diagnose and access attentional and cognitive deficits following blast injury

Response Anticipation and Response Conflict: an Event-Related Potential and Functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging Study

Management of Brain-Injured Patients by an Evidence-Based Medicine Protocol Improves Outcomes and Decreases Hospital Charges

The Predictive Brain State: Asynchrony in Disorders of Attention

The Predictive Brain State: Timing Deficiency in Traumatic Brain Injury

Clinical Policy: Neuroimaging and Decisionmaking in Adult Mild Traumatic Brain Injury in the Acute Setting

Severe TBI and Coma

U.S. Trauma Center Surveys

The BTF developed and implemented the first survey of U.S. trauma centers, in 1991, which revealed considerable variability in head injury care. The survey results led to the development of BTF’s Guidelines for the Management of Severe Head Injury. In 2000 and 2007, the BTF again surveyed U.S. trauma centers, and showed increasing compliance with the BTF Guidelines.

» More information on BTF Surveys

TBI-Trac Research

BTF works with trauma centers around the world to improve compliance with BTF’s Guidelines and gathers data (TBI-Trac) on TBI patients in a coma. This data provides feedback to the trauma center medical personnel to improve their practices. In addition, this data is aggregated and analyzed to scientifically investigate new methods to save lives and improve outcomes. BTF has published several articles on improving outcomes by transporting patients directly to trauma centers, increasing nutrition delivery and brain pressure monitoring.

Coma Publications

Impact of falls on early mortality from severe traumatic brain injury

Marked Improvement in Adherence to TBI Guidelines in US Trauma Centers

Direct transport within an organized state trauma system reduces mortality in patients with severe traumatic brain injury

Effect of Early Nutrition on Deaths from Severe Traumatic Brain Injury

CDC Study Demonstrates that Adoption of BTF’s Guidelines Could Save Lives (press release)

Using a Cost-Benefit Analysis to Estimate Outcomes of a Clinical Treatment Guideline: Testing the Brain Trauma Foundation Guidelines for the Treatment of Severe Traumatic Brain Injury

Management of Severe Head Injury: Institutional Variations in Care and Effect on Outcome

Development and Implementation of a Clinical Pathway for Severe Traumatic Brain Injury

The Impact on Outcomes in a Community Hospital Setting of Using the AANS Traumatic

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