Repetitive Head Impacts

The overarching aim of our research is to detect and to characterize alterations in the brain's structure, function, connectivity, and metabolism due to exposure to repetitive head impacts. Our group was the first to show alterations in the brain’s microstructure following repetitive head impacts in young soccer players, as well as structural changes in ice hockey players over the course of a play season. We detected signs of accelerated aging and neuroinflammation associated with exposure to repetitive brain trauma.

Repetitive Subconcussive Head Impacts - Brain Alterations and Clinical Consequences:
This is a multidisciplinary, longitudinal multi-site study across Europe that follows youth soccer players over the course of a year. The results of this project will likely change our understanding of the effects of repetitive head impacts and risk factors for long-term impairment in youth athletes.
Contact Dr. David Kaufmann at
Click HERE to visit the RepImpact Research Project website

American Football and Ice Hockey - Effects of Repetitive Head Impacts in Contact Sports:
Repetitive Head impacts in high school and college-level American football and ice hockey are associated with changes in brain microstructure. Some of those changes may be reversible following a period of no-contact rest. We are investigating the underlying pathomechanisms as well as potential risk factors for changes in cognitive function.
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Imaging of Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy:
Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy is a neurodegenerative disease associated with exposure to repetitive head impacts. To date, CTE can only be diagnosed post-mortem and there is no effective treatment. In collaboration with Dr. Shenton and Dr. Stern, we are working towards characterizing brain structure and metabolism in those at high risk for CTE.
Click HERE to visit the DIAGNOSE CTE and DETECT Research Project website