Why study the brains of sports players?
With researchers in the USA diagnosing an increasing number of cases of chronic traumatic encephalopathy in former sports players and questions being raised about the management of concussions in sport, we set out to bring the complex world of neuroscience to a UK sports setting.
By bringing these worlds together, The Drake Foundation has pioneered six groundbreaking scientific studies into head injuries in sport and their potential long-term effects, including studies into concussion in football and concussion in rugby.
As we look to the future, it is clear that the brains of sports players hold valuable insights into the long-term effects of head injuries. Over the last few years, evidence of a link between traumatic brain injuries, including concussion, and later-life neurodegenerative disease has been building.
By studying the brains of sports players, a group of people more likely than most to experience minor head injuries, we hope to build a picture of what happens in the brain after injury and how neurodegenerative diseases develop in this setting.