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The research in the Division has three main strands:  The first involves physiological imaging in traumatic brain injury (TBI), at all stages, from ictus to late outcome.  Positron emission tomography (PET) and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) in the acute phase currently addresses novel mechanisms of energy failure, including diffusion hypoxia and mitochondrial dysfunction.  Allied studies have addressed the mechanisms of action of novel interventions such as hyperoxia.  Our late studies with 11C-flumazenil PET have shown selective neuronal loss and late diffusion weighted imaging has been used to map the extent and severity of white matter loss.  Both of these subtle sequelae of TBI are missed by conventional MR imaging, and may account for the mismatch between structural lesions and cognitive outcomes.  A second strand focuses on the neuro-anatomical basis of coma and consciousness, both in pathological states, and in the controlled situation of sedation induced by anaesthetic agents.  Finally, the Division has a growing program in pain research that involves functional imaging, pain phenotyping and pain genetics.

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