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CTE pathology in a neurodegenerative disorders brain bank

Evidence Suggests Amateur Contact Sports Increase Risk of Degenerative Disorder

Chronic traumatic encephalopathy pathology in a neurodegenerative disorders brain bank

Bieniek, K., Ross, O., Cormier, K., Walton, R., Soto-Ortolaza, A., & et. al. Chronic traumatic encephalopathy pathology in a neurodegenerative disorders brain bank. Acta Neuropathologica, 130(6), 877-889. doi:10.​1007/​s00401-015-1502-4

A Mayo Clinic study, published in the December issue of Acta Neuropathologica, links amateur contact sports — football, boxing, wrestling, rugby, basketball, baseball and others played while in school — with the development of CTE, which when severe can affect mood, behavior and cognition.

This study is the first to use CTE neuropathologic criteria established by the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS) earlier this year to look for incidence of the disease in nonprofessional athletes, says the study’s senior author, Dennis Dickson, M.D., a neuropathologist at Mayo Clinic.

“Using these criteria, Bieniek’s report is the first detailed description of CTE pathology in a brain bank. As such, his work is groundbreaking,” Dr. Dickson says. “The frequency with which he found CTE pathology in former athletes exposed to contact sports was surprising. It is pathology that had gone previously unrecognized.” Bieniek is a member of Dr. Dickson’s laboratory.

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