Detecting acute ventilation-induced brain injury

Lead researcher

Mr Dhafer M Alahmari

Main finding

We were able to use imaging techniques to detect brain injury in preclinical models that received injurious ventilation. By isolating the haemodynamic pathway from the inflammatory pathway, we further identified that both pathways are major contributors to ventilation-induced brain injury.


The Ritchie Centre

Research group

Perinatal Transition Group


Ms Kyra YY Chan
Ms Vanesa Stojanovska
Dr Domenic LaRosa
Dr Samantha K Barton
Dr Ilias Nitsos
Ms Valerie Zahra
Ms Jade Barbuto
A/Prof Michael Farrell
Dr Shigeo Yamaoka
Dr James T Pearson
A/Prof Graeme R Polglase

Journal and article title

Most surprising

This is the first time we've shown that ventilation-induced brain injury persists to 24 hours in the preterm lamb brain and is detectable by advanced magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) techniques.

Future implications

Our findings suggest that brain injury following injurious ventilation is detectable by diffusion tensor imaging and magnetic resonance spectroscopy 24 hours after insult - a time-point relevant to when clinical MRI is usually performed on preterm babies. Importantly, therapeutic strategies should target both pathways of ventilation-induced brain injury to effectively prevent or reduce adverse neurological outcomes in ventilated preterm infants.

Disease/health impact

Preterm brain injury