Alachua Biotech Firm Speeds Test for Brain Injuries

Alachua Biotech Firm Speeds Test for Brain Injuries (Gainesville Sun)

(UF startup Banyan Biomarkers recently received FDA approval for its blood test that measures biomarkers that indicate traumatic brain injury. The blood test will streamline diagnoses, cut back on unnecessary CT scans, and should be available in about two years.)

Ron Hayes remembers the moment his career in neuroscience took a turn — from being a behind-the-scenes “bench scientist” to one deeply invested in clinical medicine.

He was observing comatose trauma patients in the hospital intensive care unit who were on ventilators. One mother was holding her vegetative son.

“I thought immediately of Michelangelo’s Pietà,” he said, recalling the famous statue of Mary holding a dying Jesus. “It just occurred to me that nothing that I was doing was going to help these people.”

Until then, Hayes had been doing preclinical rodent research on the chemical mechanisms of traumatic brain injury, or TBI, at the University of Florida’s McKnight Brain Institute in Gainesville.

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