A University of Rochester graduate helped make a big discovery when it comes to chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE). Jonathan Cherry, who was a student at the U of R, is the first author on a study that identified a possible biomarker that could be used to diagnose CTE. CTE has made headlines in recent years after a number of NFL players have been diagnosed with the condition. Researchers say it develops in people who have suffered repeated blows to the head.

A University of Rochester graduate helped make a big discovery when it comes to chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE).

Jonathan Cherry, who was a student at the U of R, is the first author on a study that identified a possible biomarker that could be used to diagnose CTE.

CTE has made headlines in recent years after a number of NFL players have been diagnosed with the condition. Researchers say it develops in people who have suffered repeated blows to the head.

At this point in time, CTE can only be discovered during the autopsy. But, the discovery of the biomarker by Cherry and his colleagues at Boston University may be the gateway to a test for people who are still alive.

Cherry says more research is needed.

“What’s most likely going to happen is that we’ll end up with a panel of biomarkers -- maybe three or four -- that will let us diagnose CTE reliably,” Cherry said in a BU Today article.