Jennifer Strahle, MD

Assistant Professor of Neurosurgery

Pathophysiology of brain injury and hydrocephalus after neonatal intraventricular hemorrhage Read More

Lab Phone: (314) 273-1665
Website: Faculty page
Lab Location: BJC-Institute of Health, Room 7118
Keywords: Hydrocephalus, intraventricular hemorrhage, cilia, cerebrospinal fluid, iron, hemoglobin, brain development

Pathophysiology of brain injury and hydrocephalus after neonatal intraventricular hemorrhage

Intraventricular hemorrhage (IVH) is common in very low birth weight infants and frequently results in brain injury and hydrocephalus. It is unknown how hydrocephalus develops in this population and there are no preventative treatments for hydrocephalus or brain injury. My lab studies how the release of blood breakdown products after IVH results in damage to the cilia-lined ependyma and choroid plexus of the ventricular system. The subventricular zone lies subjacent to the ventricle and contains neural progenitor cells, which extend cilia-bearing processes to the ventricular surface. We study how neurodevelopment is altered after IVH (through ventricular injury or direct injury to the subventricular zone) and if any repair mechanisms exist. Ultimately our goal is to understand how ventricular damage and/or cilia dysfunction result in hydrocephalus.

My research is in line with the mission of the Hope Center, which is to understand how brain/neural injury occurs and how cells are repaired. Neonatal IVH occurs during a key period of neurodevelopment and we increasingly see survivors of IVH born as young as 24 weeks gestation. It is unknown how IVH results in neuronal death in this vulnerable population and if any repair mechanisms are at play. Hydrocephalus is a frequent sequela of IVH, which usually requires lifelong treatment. Understanding how IVH causes neuronal injury and hydrocephalus will hopefully allow for targeted therapeutics to prevent the downstream effects of IVH.