Laboratory for Brain Injury and Dementia


The Laboratory for Brain Injury and Dementia (LBID) at Georgetown University is directed by Mark P. Burns, PhD. It uses in vivo brain trauma models to understand why TBI causes the activation of pathways involved in chronic neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer's disease.

We aim to understand the role of neurodegenerative pathways in acute cell death after TBI, and also if these pathways are involved in the development of dementias, such as Alzheimer's disease and chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE). CTE has been best reported in boxers, but has been found in the brains of NFL players, wrestlers, hockey players, abuse victims, and people who have suffered repeat concussions throughout their lives.

Contusion, concussion and penetrative brain trauma models are the most commonly used models in the LBID, and the lab has capability to perform surgery, behavioral and biochemical aspects of research. We also take advantage of the outstanding core imaging facilities available at Georgetown University, including a small animal imaging laboratory with a 7Tesla magnetic resonance imager, confocal microscopy, stereology, fluorescent and standard microscopy.



Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI): an insult to the brain from an external force, possibly leading to permanent or temporary impairment of cognitive, physical, and psychosocial functions.

Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy (CTE): a progressive degenerative disease of the brain found in athletes or persons with a history of repetitive concussions