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Neural Plasticity
Volume 2017, Article ID 4296075, 8 pages
Review Article

Therapeutic Potentials of Synapses after Traumatic Brain Injury: A Comprehensive Review

1Department of Neurosurgery & Brain and Nerve Research Laboratory, The First Affiliated Hospital of Soochow University, 188 Shizi Street, Suzhou 215006, China
2School of Nursing, Medical College of Soochow University, Suzhou 215006, China
3Department of Neurosurgery, Lianyungang Hospital of Traditional Chinese Medicine, Lianyungang 222004, China

Correspondence should be addressed to Gang Chen; moc.361@yregrusoruen_ujn

Received 29 November 2016; Revised 9 February 2017; Accepted 14 March 2017; Published 12 April 2017

Academic Editor: Chih-Lung Lin

Copyright © 2017 Zunjia Wen et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Massive studies have focused on the understanding of the pathobiology of cellular and molecular changes and injury mechanisms after traumatic brain injury (TBI), but very few studies have specially discussed the role of synapses in the context of TBI. This paper specifically highlights the role and therapeutic potentials of synapses after TBI. First, we review and conclude how synapses interact with constant structural, metabolic, neuroendocrine, and inflammatory mechanisms after TBI. Second, we briefly describe several key synaptic proteins involved in neuroplasticity, which may be novel neuronal targets for specific intervention. Third, we address therapeutic interventions in association with synapses after TBI. Finally, we concisely discuss the study gaps in the synapses after TBI, in hopes that this would provide more insights for future studies. Synapses play an important role in TBI; while the understandings on the synaptic participation in the treatments and prognosis of TBI are lacking, more studies in this area are warranted.