Mar 06, 2014
By AM740 Staff
A unique brain health study that focuses on aging hockey players is being expanded to include university hockey alumni. The study began in 2011 and has 30 NHL alumni enrolled. It’s led by the world-renowned Rotman Research Institute at Baycrest Health Sciences in Toronto. The study expansion is possible thanks to an additional 750 thousand dollar funding boost from the Canadian Institutes of Health Research. The five year study also has received funding from the Alzheimer Society of Canada. Study participants have their brains scanned and contribute blood and fluid samples to help researchers identify risk factors associated with dementia, including genetics. The participants also have the option of donating their brains after death for research. Brian Levine is a senior scientists with Baycrest and expert on head trauma and dementia. He says the expanded research means that the finding can be applied to a sample more representative of the general population. He says the study is intended to determine factors that influence the aging process, especially around brain health and dementia.