California Researchers Working on Brain Injury Drug to Prevent Epilepsy

Traumatic brain injuries are some of the most frequent injuries sustained in bicycle accidents. Approximately 50% of people who suffer a brain injury are at risk of an epileptic attack. Researchers at the University Of California, Berkeley are working on a drug that can help reduce the risk of such epileptic attacks.

According to the researchers, they have discovered a simple protein in the blood that causes epilepsy after brain damage. Large amounts of that protein cause seizures, and other symptoms of epilepsy.

Back in 2002, two of the researchers studied the processes that are set into motion, when the brain is injured during a bicycle accident or any other type of accident. They realized that the person was at a much higher risk of seizures, if the brain had been exposed to blood that had circulated throughout the body. The person was at a high risk of epilepsy because of a protein called albumin.

This is not a rarely found protein. In fact, it is one of the most common proteins in the blood. This protein is produced in the liver, and while it is very important to have this protein in the body for healthy blood, it can be dangerous and can lead to health consequences if it crosses the blood-brain barrier. During the injury, the damaged blood-brain barrier can allow extra albumin in, which further exacerbates the injury, and triggers seizures.

Now, the researchers are using their findings to help preserve precious brain cells after a brain injury. The albumin tends to interact with a cell protein called TGF-beta receptor, triggering epilepsy, and the researchers believe that a prescription drug for high blood pressure could prevent TGF-beta receptors from signaling.

Avoiding Bicycle Accidents at Intersections

As a bicyclist, it’s very important for you to educate yourself about the basic rules of the road, and traffic safety laws. Many bicyclists are surprised to find that they are subjected to the same traffic rules as everybody else. In other words, if you are involved in an accident due to your own negligence or your violation of traffic rules, you could be held partly responsible for your own injuries.

Many bicycle accidents occur at intersections, and there are several reasons for this. Very often, motorists approaching an intersection are not expecting to find a bicyclist on the road. This is not just because many motorists don’t bother to look out for bicyclists, but also because the bicyclist may not be easily visible, or because the sun is shining in the motorist’s face, reducing visibility, and so on. Bicyclists have a narrow frame, and tend to blend into the scenery.

None of that means that motorists get a free pass, and can get away with failing to look out for bicyclists. However, it does mean that a bicyclist needs to be much more careful when he’s approaching an intersection to avoid an accident. Remember, a bicycle accident, especially one that involves a rash driver at an intersection and a bicyclist, can have serious consequences for the bicyclist.

You can reduce your risk of being involved in an accident at an intersection, by increasing your visibility. That means wearing clothing that is designed and brightly-colored so that it stands out in traffic, making it easier for motorists to spot you. Wear reflective clothing, stick reflective tape on your bicycles and accessories like your bag, and wear neon-colored helmets as well.

While motorists are required to look out for a bicyclist, it is also just as important for bicyclists to look out for cars at intersections.

Attorneys Plan to Investigate Tesla’s Role in Causing Fatal Bicycle Accident

Lawyers for a California man, who was involved in a fatal Santa Cruz bicycle accident, have announced that they plan to investigate the Tesla car that the motorist was driving at the time.

According to prosecutors, the man has been charged with a misdemeanor, but not a felony offense, because they believe that he exercised “ordinary negligence,” and failed to use reasonable care in avoiding the accident. The accident occurred when the man apparently dozed off at the wheel of his Tesla, colliding with a bicyclist. According to the California Highway Patrol’s investigation report, there was nothing that the bicyclist here could have done to avoid the accident. He succumbed to his injuries. The victim was a librarian at University Of California Santa Cruz.

According to the motorist’s attorneys, they plan to investigate the Tesla because of a possibility that the drowsy driving could have been the result of an odor in the car. The motorist happens to be a vegetarian, and does not use meat or animal-based products, and because of this, the interior of the car was not made from leather or fabric, but from a synthetic material. The motorist had placed a can of baking soda in the car to absorb the smell of the synthetic material, and attorneys believe that the smell could have played a role in his dozing off at the wheel.

So far, the motorist who happens to be a technology executive has not been arrested for his role in the accident.

As we move into spring and summer, we are likely to see far more bicyclists on the road, and an increase in collisions like these caused by motorists, who fail to lookout for people on bicycles.