Hall of Fame Boxer Donates Brain For CTE Research

Legendary boxer Eder Jofre has become the latest athlete to donate his brain for CTE research.

Jofre, who passed away in October 2022, is widely considered to be one of the best boxer’s of all time and the only Brazilian inducted into the International Boxing Hall of Fame. He retired with an incredible 72-2-4 record and held the world championship across two weight classes.

Jofre suspected he suffered from CTE and decided to donate his brain for CTE research.

Rose Gracie who launched the “Gracie Concussion Challenge” in collaboration with the Concussion Legacy Foundation and continues the drive with the combat sports specific charity Fighting Foundation has helped advocate for fighters like Jofre to make this significant scientific donation.

CTE and brain health researchers continue to look for athletes to donate their brains (not just combat sport and collision sport athletes, but athletes from across all sporting disciplines) to help build a more robust foundation for CTE research. Athletes looking to follow in Jofre’s footsteps can find more information here. I spoke with Dr. Bernick, one of the key researchers studying the disease, in recent weeks who emphasized both men and women’s donations are needed to continue to strengthen the existing database.

Fighting Foundation and the Concussion Legacy Foundation have published the below press release:

SÃO PAULO, BRAZIL. (November 30th 2022)

Eder Jofre, who died October 2, 2022, chose to donate his
brain to studies on Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy (CTE), a pathology formerly known as dementia
pugilistica. The decision was honored by his family, who announced the donation at a press conference
held on Thursday October, 20th at the office of neurologist, Dr. Renato Anghinah, who managed Jofre!s
treatment. The studies will be performed by Dr. Roberta Diehl Rodriguez from the Biobank for Aging
Studies at University of São Paulo, the only lab in Brazil equipped to perform this exam.

“Donating his brain to research to advance CTE studies is one of the best things a fighter can do for the
combat sports family,” said Rose Gracie, co-founder of Fighting Foundation and director of the Gracie
Concussion Challenge, in collaboration with the Concussion Legacy Foundation. “He led an incredible life
and furthers it with this incredible legacy.”

Jofre’s determination to contribute to research was motivated by fellow boxer Muhammed Ali’s decision
not to donate his brain when he died. #Eder was very upset with Ali!s decision. That’s when he was sure
he would do it differently,” said Dr. Anghinah.

Jofre first began experiencing symptoms of CTE in 2010. The symptoms intensified over the years,
suffering from mood swings, tremors, and limited mobility. CTE is a progressive neurodegenerative
disease caused by repetitive head impacts. It has been diagnosed in nearly 1,000 contact sports athletes
and military veterans around the world. It was first seen in boxing, which is why it was first named
“punch drunk”.

In October 2018, Gracie advised the Concussion Legacy Foundation on its Global Brain Bank partnership
launch with the University of São Paulo (USP) in Brazil. She continues to serve as a liaison to support
development, recruitment, and media efforts for the CLF Global Brain Bank and the Biobank for Aging
Studies in Brazil. In January 2019, Gracie and the Concussion Legacy Foundation launched the Gracie
Concussion Challenge to accelerate research and awareness for brain injury and CTE in the combat sport
community. Gracie continues this important work through CLF and Fighting Foundation.

About The Concussion Legacy Foundation
The Concussion Legacy Foundation is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization based in the United States with
chapters in Canada, the United Kingdom, and Australia. It was founded by Robert Cantu, MD, and Chris
Nowinski, PhD to support athletes, veterans, and all affected by concussions and CTE, to promote
smarter sports and safer athletes through education and innovation, and end CTE through prevention
and research. CLF is a proud supporter and collaborator with the Boston University CTE Center.

About Fighting Foundation
Fighting Foundation, a charitable organization launched in 2021, focuses on the well being of boxing,
MMA, Jiu-Jitsu, and other combat sports’ participants. Co-founders Rose Gracie and Carla Duran, along
with Lawyer Erik Magraken and with the guidance of Neurologist Dr. Renato Anghinah, were driven to
action after recognizing a noticeable void in the combat sports space. Providing education, research,
resources, and treatment around the world to those that need it within the combat sports community.


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