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‘No surprise at all’: Researchers uncover deadly brain disease in former NRL players

Researchers have discovered evidence of a serious brain condition caused by concussion in the brains of two former rugby league players.

Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy (CTE) is a progressive degenerative disease of the brain, often found in people who have experienced repeated trauma to the head.

In an Australian first, researchers from Royal Prince Alfred Hospital, NSW Health Pathology and the University of Sydney’s Brain and Mind Centre have made the discovery that the condition also affects NRL players.

Dr Adrian Cohen, concussion researcher from the University of Sydney and founder of Headsafe, tells Ben Fordham the study is groundbreaking.

“For about the last decade the sports have been telling us that there’s no evidence that this is a condition that happens in Australia.

“We now have evidence, it’s been seen under the microscope. And it’s in line with everything we’ve learnt from overseas. 

“It’s no surprise at all. Our sports, including league, are equally tough and probably have more head impacts per game than American football.”

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