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Home / News / Late BMX Biker Dave Mirra Diagnosed With CTE

Late BMX Biker Dave Mirra Diagnosed With CTE


BMX icon Dave Mirra, who died in February, suffered from the type of chronic brain damage that has shown up in the brains of dozens of football players, a University of Toronto neuropathologist has concluded. Multiple neuropathologists confirmed the diagnosis.

Mirra is the first action sports athlete to be diagnosed with chronic traumatic encephalopathy, a neurodegenerative disease that can lead to dementia, memory loss and depression. He died on Feb. 4 from a self-inflicted gunshot wound.

Most scientists believe that CTE is a result of repeated, or subconcussive, hits to the the head. The concern is that each time the head takes a pounding, it shakes the brain inside the skull.

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That can lead to a buildup of an abnormal protein called tau, which can take over parts of the brain.

CTE can result in Alzheimer’s disease-like symptoms, including memory loss, rage and mood swings.

Mirra’s wife, Lauren said in a statement:

“We would like to thank our family, friends and the overwhelming number of Dave’s fans who have supported us during this difficult time … We ask for your continued support in honoring Dave’s legacy and for your patience as we plan to create a platform for CTE awareness and research.”

Mirra will be inducted into the National BMX Hall of Fame in Chula Vista, California, on June 11. He will also be honored June 4 during this year’s X Games in Austin, Texas, with a new event named for him, the Dave Mirra BMX Park Best Trick competition. The winner will be awarded the Mirra Golden Pedal and prize money.

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