Neurological Abuse Markers Save Babies
Brain injury in infants is a silent epidemic, especially if the cause of the brain trauma is abuse. Infants who are injured cannot speak for themselves and parents who have caused the injury are unlikely to come forward. Axela Biosensors, a Toronto based company, has developed a test to determine the presence of two proteins that are markers of brain injury. Currently the technology is being tested in Pittsburgh and Salt Lake City as part of a five year trial involving 1000 children. The new technology will enable physicians to find the "smoking gun" to detect abuse which has resulted in brain injury. Recent literature on brain injury and child abuse indicate that 1 in 3000 children are the victims of severe and sometimes fatal brain injuries. The new technology offers an opportunity to protect vulnerable children during their initial visit to an emergency room and perhaps to save them from a cycle of abuse with potentially life threatening results.