Researchers have discovered a protein that might prevent neurons from dying after traumatic brain injuries such as those caused by severe car accidents. Seong-Seng Tan of the Howard Florey Institute in Australia and his colleagues tested the activity of 18,000 genes in surviving neurons (right) that surrounded an injury site in the brains of mice. All but one gene—responsible for generating the protein N4WBP5—drastically reduced their protein production during the 24 hours after injury. When Tan manipulated stressed brain cells into producing more N4WBP5 than usual, a dramatically higher number of cells survived.