Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy (CTE), biomarkers, neurodegenerative disease, tau protein, and traumatic brain injury
Increased media coverage on the potential risk of full-contact sports related concussions leading to Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy (CTE) has led to a proactive response within the scientific community. Scientists are in search of a way to diagnose and prevent the spread of this neurodegenerative disease. In the past, diagnosis of CTE was primarily confirmed by an extensive autopsy of the brain with a considerable amount of tau protein being a strong indicator of CTE. Finding new biomarker imaging tools to assess an individual's brain prior to death is greatly needed. In the past few years, newly developed tau protein probes have been made available for imaging use in the area of neurodegenerative diseases. In comparison to prior pathological histology findings present in CTE diseased brains, the biomarker probes were found to illuminate tau aggregates in the brain with similar correlating patterns to prior autopsy reports. Biomarkers are available for use in both imaging and blood serum/ cerebrospinal fluid assays for identifying tau protein. Further research in these areas is warranted as the definition and clinical symptoms of CTE become clearer.
O'Hara, Melody, "Is It Worth It?: A Review of the Current Diagnostic Tools and Understandings of Athletes Suffering with CTE" (2017). Other Undergraduate Research. 1.