NPR's Radio Boston Interview with Dr. Stern and ESPN's Steve Fainaru About the New CTE Grant



"In 2012, the National Football League announced that it would contribute $30 million dollars to fund research on the effects of concussions on football players. Boston University was to receive much of that grant. Now, ESPN is reporting that the NFL is backing out of that commitment, after taking issue with the BU study’s lead researcher, Dr. Robert Stern."

Listen to the full segment HERE

Boston University: NIH/ NINDS Grant Award


Boston University: Press release to congratulate Dr. Stern and award recipients on NIH/NINDS grant!


"Researchers from Boston University, the Cleveland Clinic, Banner Alzheimer’s Institute and Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston, have been awarded a $16 million* grant from the National Institutes of Health/National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NIH/NINDS). This seven-year, multi-center grant will be used to create methods for detecting and diagnosing chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE) during life as well as examining risk factors for CTE."

Click HERE for the full press release

Grant of Nearly $16 million for C.T.E. Researchers



“There are so many critical unanswered questions about C.T.E.,” Robert Stern, the lead principal investigator and a professor of neurology, neurosurgery and anatomy and neurobiology at Boston University School of Medicine, said in a statement. “We are optimistic that this project will lead to many of these answers, by developing accurate methods of detecting and diagnosing C.T.E. during life, and by examining genetic and other risk factors for this disease.”

Click HERE for the full story

STAT: New Study Will Examine NFL Players' Brains in Bid to Spot Early Signs of Damage



The new grant will fund research in 17 centers across the country. One of the principal investigators is Robert Stern, director of clinical research at Boston University’s Alzheimer’s Disease and CTE Center. In October, Stern concluded a study, known as DETECT, that examined approximately 100 former NFL players to advance understanding of CTE. Stern described the new initiative as “the DETECT study on steroids.”

Read the full story HERE

60 Minutes: Football and the Brain



"If you are one of the millions of people who watched football before this broadcast -- many of you on this network -- you know that NFL players get their brains rattled on a weekly basis and for some of them the long-term consequences may eventually offset the glory of playing the game. After a decade of denying a link between onfield concussions and brain impairment later in life, the NFL finally acknowledged the connection and is now trying to reengineer the sport to fit the medical science. It's changing the rules, trying to reinvent equipment and funding scientific research that might endanger its future both as the country's most popular sport and as a multibillion-dollar industry. Not since football was nearly banned a hundred years ago has the sport been under the microscope the way it is today and all of it has to do with matters of the brain."

Watch the segment HERE

Science Friday: Is football bad for your brain?



"The conversation about football and the future of the sport seems inextricably linked to concussions. Take former San Francisco 49ers linebacker Chris Borland’s decision to leave the National Football League after his rookie season, citing fear of brain damage from repetitive head trauma, for example, or the fact that 50 percent of Americans say they don’t want their sons to pick up the sport."

Trauma Test: Concussions in Athletes


Dr. Stern weighs in on up and coming research that could have a positive impact on safety in athletics, a topic that has been building as it is seen in professional athletes as well as student athletes. Dr. Stern and Kevin Hrusovsky, CEO of Quanterix, talk about the importance of this research and the importance a test like this could have.

Watch the full video HERE


I Remember Better When I Paint- Thursday, Friday, Sunday, Monday


I Remember Better When I Paint shows how the creative arts can enhance the quality of life for people with Alzheimer’s.Narrated by Academy award-winning actress Olivia de Havilland, this international documentary includes visits to a variety of care facilities, as well as leading art museums in North America and Europe, to demonstrate how creative activities such as drawing, painting and museum visits can reawaken a sense of identity, dignity and engagement among those with severe memory impairment.

Leading doctors and neurologists explain how parts of the brain can be spared and discuss the life-enriching benefits of these new approaches. Among these experts are Dr. Robert Butler, a founding director of the National Institutes on Aging (NIH) and a Pulitzer Prize-winning author, Dr. Samuel Gandy of Mt. Sinai School of Medicine, Dr. Robert Green of Brigham and Women’s Hospital and Harvard Medical School and Dr. Robert Stern, Professor of Neurology at Boston University.

View the trailer HERE

Viewing times HERE

TIME: Pediatrics Group Says Young Football Players Can Tackle If Done Safely


Excerpt: "Stern says he agrees with many of the statements made by the AAP, and that he realizes that the research on the long term effects of blows in the game is not definitive. “I completely agree that the benefits associated with playing football are tremendous. I love football,” he says. “Yet I don’t understand how they can make the recommendations in the way they did.”

Read the full story HERE

Dudley Allen Sargent Lecture: Dr. Stern attracts 300


Dr. Stern was invited to give a lecture on CTE at Sargent College on October 1st. Appropriate for the rehabilitation school setting, the presentation focused on the long term effects of repetitive head injuries. As a major public health concern for our country, the brain disease CTE can lead to many health concerns. The importance of protecting one's head is often underestimated, especially when it comes to America's favorite past times. Dr. Stern's goal was to raise awareness and provide updates on what his research is working towards.

Watch the lecture HERE

Partnership with Wingate Residences

The Wingate Residences, a leading senior living community located on the Wingate at Needham campus in Needham, Massachusetts, today announced its partnership with Boston University School of Medicine and their Alzheimer’s Disease and CTE Center (BU ADC), which is one of only 27 Alzheimer’s disease centers funded by the National Institutes of Health. This partnership aligns with Wingate’s Memory Care 360˙ program mission to enhance the lives of seniors coping with Alzheimer’s and dementia-related diseases.

“We are thrilled about this new affiliation between the Wingate Residences and the BU Alzheimer’s Disease and CTE Center,” said Stern. “I look forward to working closely with the leadership and staff at the Wingate Residences in the days and years to come as we jointly promote education, research, and the very best care for individuals with Alzheimer’s disease and other causes of dementia. My staff and I are eager to start seeing our returning and new research participants at the Wingate Residences for their study evaluations for the HOPE study. The convenience of the Needham location and the beautiful and inviting environment will be appreciated by all.”

Click HERE for the full story!

Boston Globe Discusses Stern Lab Research on Early-Age Risks of Football

Excerpt: "A study released Monday of 40 former NFL players between the ages of 40 and 65 found that those who began playing tackle football before the age of 12 faced a higher risk of altered brain development than those who waited until they were older.

The findings, by researchers at Boston University School of Medicine and Brigham and Women’s Hospital, are the first to show a link between repetitive head impacts early in life and structural brain changes later in life, researchers said."

A Light at the End of the Tunnel for Alzheimer’s? Dr. Stern says it may be coming


Excerpt: "Stern said that T-817MA could also go a step further and protect brain cells from destruction of Alzheimer's disease, which leads to dementia.
'The changes in the brain in Alzheimer's disease start maybe 20 years before the first symptoms and then get worse and worse as the disease gets further along," said Stern. "If this drug would work, it would slow that progression so the person would be able to maintain a much better quality of life without deteriorating.' Stern said that would be a game changer for patients and their caregivers."

Dr. Stern Discusses Cognitive Risks for NFL Players on Boston's WBUR

Excerpt: "...a new study from BU School of Medicine researchers points to a possible increased risk of cognitive impairment from playing youth football. The National Institutes of Health–funded study, published online in the Jan. 28 edition of the journal Neurology, finds that former National Football League players who participated in tackle football before the age of 12 are more likely to have memory and thinking problems as adults"

"....the findings support the idea that it may not make sense to allow children—at a time when their brain is rapidly developing—to be exposed to repetitive hits to the head. If larger studies confirm this one, we may need to consider safety changes in youth sports.” -Dr. Robert Stern

Long-term consequences for short-term play: The Issue of Youth Football

Excerpt: " 'They were worse on all the tests we looked at," said Dr. Robert Stern, lead author and a professor of neurology and neurosurgery.' They had problems learning and remembering lists of words. They had problems with being flexible in their decision-making and problem-solving."
The authors concluded that incurring repeated head impacts in football between the ages of 10 and 12, a critical and sensitive window for brain development, may increase the risk of later-life cognitive impairment. During those early years, the brain is rapidly building connections between neurons."

An Unsettling Deal on Concussions

Excerpt: "I am not a lawyer. I am not someone who likes to take sides," Stern says. "But I realized the court settlement was difficult if not impossible for most people to understand. And when I read the details, I thought something had to be done to let people know what this settlement truly means."

The NFL Concussion Settlement: Dr. Stern Inside Look

Excerpt: "Boston University researcher Robert Stern said that many of the 76 deceased NFL players found to have the brain decay known as CTE would not have qualified for awards had they lived. Some never developed the dementia, Alzheimer’s and other neurological problems covered in the minimum $765-million settlement. “That’s what started the whole discussion (of NFL concussions) and it’s not compensated,” Stern told The Associated Press in an interview Tuesday. “Repetitive hits to the head do not lead to Alzheimer’s disease. They lead to CTE, if anything.”

CTE Study finds first symptoms in athletes with brain disease

Excerpt: “The disease can only be diagnosed in autopsy, but there have been reports of emotional changes and Alzheimer's-like symptoms in some athletes prior to their posthumous diagnoses. The disease has been found in former NFL players including Dave Duerson, Ray Easterling and more recently Junior Seau, all of whom committed suicide. By studying male athletes with CTE, the researchers found what may provide the earliest signs of the disorder in the living.”