Robert A. Stern, PhD
Boston University School of Medicine
Dept of Neurology

PhD, University of Rhode Island
MA, University of Rhode Island

As the Clinical Core Director of the NIA-funded Boston University Alzheimer’s Disease Center (BU ADC), I oversee a multidisciplinary group of talented scientists and clinicians and direct the center’s longitudinal research registry, as well as several NIH- and industry-funded diagnostic, prevention, and treatment trials. The major focus of my current research is on the long-term effects of repetitive head impacts in athletes, including the neuropathological, risk factors (genetic and head impact exposure), neuroimaging, biomarker development, and clinical diagnosis and descriptions of the neurodegenerative disease, chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE). Recently, my study in Nature’s Translational Psychiatry found an association between participation in youth tackle football before age 12 and impaired mood and behavior later in life.

Other areas of my current and recent research program include the diagnosis, risk factors, and treatment of cognitive decline and neuropsychiatric dysfunction in aging. I have also published extensively on the psychometric properties of many widely used tests in neuropsychology, as well as the use of various instruments and biomarkers in the differential diagnosis of neurodegenerative disease. In addition, I have developed several commonly used tests and instruments, including the Neuropsychological Assessment Battery (NAB). I have had leadership positions in several training programs, have mentored over 40 trainees, and play a key role in the professional development of junior faculty in the BU School of Medicine (BUSM) Neurology Department.

Boston University School of Medicine
Anatomy & Neurobiology

Boston University School of Medicine

Director of Clinical Research
Boston University School of Medicine
Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy Center

Graduate Faculty (Primary Mentor of Grad Students)
Boston University School of Medicine, Graduate Medical Sciences

Active Staff Privileges
Boston Medical Center

2016 University of Alabama: Visiting Professor Lecture
2016 Boston University School of Medicine: Faculty Research Award
2016 Ranked #7 in USA Today’s “Top 100 Important NFL People”
2016 Ranked #57 in Sports Illustrated’s MMQB 100
2014 Mayo Clinic: Visiting Speaker
2008 Alzheimer’s Association MA/NH Chapter: National Research Award
2001 American Neuropsychiatric Association: Fellow
2001 National Academy of Neuropsychology: Fellow
1999 Brown Medicine School: Outstanding Teaching Award in Psychology
1997 Brown University: Master of Arts ad eundem
1997 National Alliance for Research on Schizophrenia & Depression (NARSAD): Independent Investigator Award
1988 Phi Kappa Phi National Honor Society: Inductee
1984 Psi Chi National Honor Society in Psychology: Inductee
1980 Wesleyan University: Heideman Award (for Community Service)

Protocol #CNP520A2202J, A randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled, parallel group study to evaluate the efficacy and safety of CNP520 in participants at risk for the onset of clinical symptoms of
05/01/2018 - 04/30/2025 (PI)
Novartis Pharmaceuticals Corporation

Protocol #API015A2201J, A randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled, two cohort parallel group study to evaluate the efficacy of CAD106 and CNP520 in participants at risk for the onset of clinical
02/01/2018 - 08/31/2024 (PI)
Novartis Pharmaceuticals Corporation

Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy: Detection, Diagnosis, Course, and Risk Factors
12/15/2015 - 11/30/2022 (PI)
NIH/National Institute of Neurological Disorders & Stroke

Registry of Amyloid Positive Patients for Alzheimer's Disease Drug Research Trials ("RAmP" or 18F-AV-45-A25)
03/20/2017 - 03/19/2020 (PI)
Avid Radiopharmaceuticals, Inc.

Tau PET Imaging for the USC Alzheimer's Therapeutic Research Institute (USC ATRI) A4 Trial (“A4 TAU”)
10/01/2016 - 12/31/2019 (PI)
University of Southern California Fundation for NIH

Anti-Amyloid Treatment in Asymptomatic Alzheimer's Disease (A4 Study)
12/11/2015 - 12/10/2019 (PI)
University of Southern California Eli Lilly and Co

Longitudinal Evaluation of Amyloid Risk and Neurodegeneration - the LEARN Study
11/01/2015 - 10/31/2019 (PI)
University of Southern California Alzheimer's Assoc

Alzheimer's Disease Cooperative Study - A4 Study
12/01/2015 - 02/28/2019 (PI)
University of Southern California NIH NIA

A placebo-controlled, double-blind, parallel-group, bayesian adaptive randomization design and dose regimen-finding study to evaluate the safety tolerability and efficacy of BAN2401 in subjects with
02/01/2013 - 12/31/2018 (PI)
Eisai, Inc

An Open label, multicenter study evaluating the imaging characteristics of a follow up F-AV-1451 scan in subjects that participated in the confirmatory cohort of FV-AV-1451-A05
09/29/2016 - 09/28/2018 (PI)
Avid Radiopharmaceuticals, Inc.

Showing 10 of 42 results. Show All Results

Yr Title Project-Sub Proj Pubs
2019 Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy: Detection, Diagnosis, Course, and Risk Factors 3U01NS093334-04S1 17
2019 Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy: Detection, Diagnosis, Course, and Risk Factors 5U01NS093334-04 17
2019 Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy: Detection, Diagnosis, Course, and Risk Factors 5U01NS093334-04 17
2018 Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy: Detection, Diagnosis, Course, and Risk Factors 5U01NS093334-03 17
2018 Core B: Clinical Core 5P30AG013846-22-6895 805
2017 Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy: Detection, Diagnosis, Course, and Risk Factors 5U01NS093334-02 17
2017 Core B: Clinical Core 2P30AG013846-21-6895 805
2016 Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy: Detection, Diagnosis, Course, and Risk Factors 1U01NS093334-01 17
2013 Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy: Clinical Presentation and Biomarkers 5R01NS078337-03 44
Showing 10 of 27 results. Show All Results
Publications listed below are automatically derived from MEDLINE/PubMed and other sources, which might result in incorrect or missing publications. Faculty can login to make corrections and additions.

  1. Standring OJ, Friedberg J, Tripodis Y, Chua AS, Cherry JD, Alvarez VE, Huber BR, Xia W, Mez J, Alosco ML, Nicks R, Mahar I, Pothast MJ, Gardner HM, Meng G, Palmisano JN, Martin BM, Dwyer B, Kowall NW, Cantu RC, Goldstein LE, Katz DI, Stern RA, McKee AC, Stein TD. Contact sport participation and chronic traumatic encephalopathy are associated with altered severity and distribution of cerebral amyloid angiopathy. Acta Neuropathol. 2019 Jun 10.View Related Profiles. PMID: 31183671.
  2. Lepage C, Muehlmann M, Tripodis Y, Hufschmidt J, Stamm J, Green K, Wrobel P, Schultz V, Weir I, Alosco ML, Baugh CM, Fritts NG, Martin BM, Chaisson C, Coleman MJ, Lin AP, Pasternak O, Makris N, Stern RA, Shenton ME, Koerte IK. Limbic system structure volumes and associated neurocognitive functioning in former NFL players. Brain Imaging Behav. 2019 Jun; 13(3):725-734.View Related Profiles. PMID: 29779184; DOI: 10.1007/s11682-018-9895-z;.
  3. DeVivo R, Zajac L, Mian A, Cervantes-Arslanian A, Steinberg E, Alosco ML, Mez J, Stern R, Killany R. Differentiating Between Healthy Control Participants and Those with Mild Cognitive Impairment Using Volumetric MRI Data. J Int Neuropsychol Soc. 2019 May 27; 1-11.View Related Profiles. PMID: 31130145.
  4. Stern RA, Adler CH, Chen K, Navitsky M, Luo J, Dodick DW, Alosco ML, Tripodis Y, Goradia DD, Martin B, Mastroeni D, Fritts NG, Jarnagin J, Devous MD, Mintun MA, Pontecorvo MJ, Shenton ME, Reiman EM. Tau Positron-Emission Tomography in Former National Football League Players. N Engl J Med. 2019 05 02; 380(18):1716-1725.View Related Profiles. PMID: 30969506.
  5. Alosco ML, Tripodis Y, Rowland B, Chua AS, Liao H, Martin B, Jarnagin J, Chaisson CE, Pasternak O, Karmacharya S, Koerte IK, Cantu RC, Kowall NW, McKee AC, Shenton ME, Greenwald R, McClean M, Stern RA, Lin A. A magnetic resonance spectroscopy investigation in symptomatic former NFL players. Brain Imaging Behav. 2019 Mar 08.View Related Profiles. PMID: 30848432; DOI: 10.1007/s11682-019-00060-4;.
  6. Sugarman MA, McKee AC, Stein TD, Tripodis Y, Besser LM, Martin B, Palmisano JN, Steinberg EG, O'Connor MK, Au R, McClean M, Killiany R, Mez J, Weiner MW, Kowall NW, Stern RA, Alosco ML. Failure to detect an association between self-reported traumatic brain injury and Alzheimer's disease neuropathology and dementia. Alzheimers Dement. 2019 May; 15(5):686-698.View Related Profiles. PMID: 30852157; DOI: 10.1016/j.jalz.2018.12.015;.
  7. Kunkle BW, Grenier-Boley B, Sims R, Bis JC, Damotte V, Naj AC, Boland A, Vronskaya M, van der Lee SJ, Amlie-Wolf A, Bellenguez C, Frizatti A, Chouraki V, Martin ER, Sleegers K, Badarinarayan N, Jakobsdottir J, Hamilton-Nelson KL, Moreno-Grau S, Olaso R, Raybould R, Chen Y, Kuzma AB, Hiltunen M, Morgan T, Ahmad S, Vardarajan BN, Epelbaum J, Hoffmann P, Boada M, Beecham GW, Garnier JG, Harold D, Fitzpatrick AL, Valladares O, Moutet ML, Gerrish A, Smith AV, Qu L, Bacq D, Denning N, Jian X, Zhao Y, Del Zompo M, Fox NC, Choi SH, Mateo I, Hughes JT, Adams HH, Malamon J, Sanchez-Garcia F, Patel Y, Brody JA, Dombroski BA, Naranjo MCD, Daniilidou M, Eiriksdottir G, Mukherjee S, Wallon D, Uphill J, Aspelund T, Cantwell LB, Garzia F, Galimberti D, Hofer E, Butkiewicz M, Fin B, Scarpini E, Sarnowski C, Bush WS, Meslage S, Kornhuber J, White CC, Song Y, Barber RC, Engelborghs S, Sordon S, Voijnovic D, Adams PM, Vandenberghe R, Mayhaus M, Cupples LA, Albert MS, De Deyn PP, Gu W, Himali JJ, Beekly D, Squassina A, Hartmann AM, Orellana A, Blacker D, Rodriguez-Rodriguez E, Lovestone S, Garcia ME, Doody RS, Munoz-Fernadez C, Sussams R, Lin H, Fairchild TJ, Benito YA, Holmes C, Karamujic-Comic H, Frosch MP, Thonberg H, Maier W, Roschupkin G, Ghetti B, Giedraitis V, Kawalia A, Li S, Huebinger RM, Kilander L, Moebus S, Hernández I, Kamboh MI, Brundin R, Turton J, Yang Q, Katz MJ, Concari L, Lord J, Beiser AS, Keene CD, Helisalmi S, Kloszewska I, Kukull WA, Koivisto AM, Lynch A, Tarraga L, Larson EB, Haapasalo A, Lawlor B, Mosley TH, Lipton RB, Solfrizzi V, Gill M, Longstreth WT, Montine TJ, Frisardi V, Diez-Fairen M, Rivadeneira F, Petersen RC, Deramecourt V, Alvarez I, Salani F, Ciaramella A, Boerwinkle E, Reiman EM, Fievet N, Rotter JI, Reisch JS, Hanon O, Cupidi C, Andre Uitterlinden AG, Royall DR, Dufouil C, Maletta RG, de Rojas I, Sano M, Brice A, Cecchetti R, George-Hyslop PS, Ritchie K, Tsolaki M, Tsuang DW, Dubois B, Craig D, Wu CK, Soininen H, Avramidou D, Albin RL, Fratiglioni L, Germanou A, Apostolova LG, Keller L, Koutroumani M, Arnold SE, Panza F, Gkatzima O, Asthana S, Hannequin D, Whitehead P, Atwood CS, Caffarra P, Hampel H, Quintela I, Carracedo Á, Lannfelt L, Rubinsztein DC, Barnes LL, Pasquier F, Frölich L, Barral S, McGuinness B, Beach TG, Johnston JA, Becker JT, Passmore P, Bigio EH, Schott JM, Bird TD, Warren JD, Boeve BF, Lupton MK, Bowen JD, Proitsi P, Boxer A, Powell JF, Burke JR, Kauwe JSK, Burns JM, Mancuso M, Buxbaum JD, Bonuccelli U, Cairns NJ, McQuillin A, Cao C, Livingston G, Carlson CS, Bass NJ, Carlsson CM, Hardy J, Carney RM, Bras J, Carrasquillo MM, Guerreiro R, Allen M, Chui HC, Fisher E, Masullo C, Crocco EA, DeCarli C, Bisceglio G, Dick M, Ma L, Duara R, Graff-Radford NR, Evans DA, Hodges A, Faber KM, Scherer M, Fallon KB, Riemenschneider M, Fardo DW, Heun R, Farlow MR, Kölsch H, Ferris S, Leber M, Foroud TM, Heuser I, Galasko DR, Giegling I, Gearing M, Hüll M, Geschwind DH, Gilbert JR, Morris J, Green RC, Mayo K, Growdon JH, Feulner T, Hamilton RL, Harrell LE, Drichel D, Honig LS, Cushion TD, Huentelman MJ, Hollingworth P, Hulette CM, Hyman BT, Marshall R, Jarvik GP, Meggy A, Abner E, Menzies GE, Jin LW, Leonenko G, Real LM, Jun GR, Baldwin CT, Grozeva D, Karydas A, Russo G, Kaye JA, Kim R, Jessen F, Kowall NW, Vellas B, Kramer JH, Vardy E, LaFerla FM, Jöckel KH, Lah JJ, Dichgans M, Leverenz JB, Mann D, Levey AI, Pickering-Brown S, Lieberman AP, Klopp N, Lunetta KL, Wichmann HE, Lyketsos CG, Morgan K, Marson DC, Brown K, Martiniuk F, Medway C, Mash DC, Nöthen MM, Masliah E, Hooper NM, McCormick WC, Daniele A, McCurry SM, Bayer A, McDavid AN, Gallacher J, McKee AC, van den Bussche H, Mesulam M, Brayne C, Miller BL, Riedel-Heller S, Miller CA, Miller JW, Al-Chalabi A, Morris JC, Shaw CE, Myers AJ, Wiltfang J, O'Bryant S, Olichney JM, Alvarez V, Parisi JE, Singleton AB, Paulson HL, Collinge J, Perry WR, Mead S, Peskind E, Cribbs DH, Rossor M, Pierce A, Ryan NS, Poon WW, Nacmias B, Potter H, Sorbi S, et al. GenetView Related Profiles. PMID: 30820047; DOI: 10.1038/s41588-019-0358-2;.
  8. Hackman H, Howland J, Taylor A, Brown L, Gapinski MA, Olshaker J, Stern RA. Application of Components of the Massachusetts' Sports Concussion Regulations to All Students With Concussion: A Survey of School Nurses. J Sch Nurs. 2018 Dec 18; 1059840518818709.View Related Profiles. PMID: 30563410.
  9. Nemani SK, Notari S, Cali I, Alvarez VE, Kofskey D, Cohen M, Stern RA, Appleby B, Abrams J, Schonberger L, McKee A, Gambetti P. Co-occurrence of chronic traumatic encephalopathy and prion disease. Acta Neuropathol Commun. 2018 12 18; 6(1):140. PMID: 30563563.
  10. Clapp JD, Luta G, Small BJ, Ahles TA, Root JC, Graham D, Hurria A, Jacobsen PB, Jim H, McDonald BC, Stern RA, Saykin AJ, Mandelblatt JS. The Impact of Using Different Reference Populations on Measurement of Breast Cancer-Related Cognitive Impairment Rates. Arch Clin Neuropsychol. 2018 Dec 01; 33(8):956-963. PMID: 29471454.
Showing 10 of 181 results. Show More

This graph shows the total number of publications by year, by first, middle/unknown, or last author.

Bar chart showing 181 publications over 33 distinct years, with a maximum of 20 publications in 2018

In addition to these self-described keywords below, a list of MeSH based concepts is available here.

Alzheimer's Disease
Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy
Contact for Mentoring:

Recent (within 3 months)

On the Precipice of Memory Loss: Pursuing Better Diagnostic Tools for Patients with CTE and Other Neurodegenerative Disorders

Genetic Literacy Project 6/13/2019

Tau and Amyloid Deposition in Living Former NFL Players

Neurology Advisor 6/12/2019

Toward Diagnosing CTE in Living People

Science and Technology Research News 5/7/2019

For Patients With Memory Loss, Working Towards Better Diagnosis

Undark 5/6/2019

BU researchers suggest hope for finding CTE clinical diagnosis

Daily Free Press 4/25/2019


Futurity 4/16/2019

Brain Scans Show High Tau Levels in Living Former Football Players with Suspected CTE

Neurology Today 4/16/2019

In Football Players With Possible CTE, Tau-PET Reveals Subtle Tau Deposition

ALZFORUM 4/12/2019

PET Scans Reveal Elevated Tau in NFL Players’ Brains

The Scientist 4/12/2019

Researchers A Step Closer To Detecting CTE In Living People

Tech Times 4/11/2019

Finding CTE in Living People? BU Just Got Closer to Doing It

Boston Magazine 4/11/2019

Brain Scans May Reveal Concussion Damage, CTE In Living Athletes

Boston 25 News 4/11/2019

New Hope For Diagnosing CTE In Living Patients

WGBH Radio 4/11/2019

Toward Diagnosing CTE in Living People

BU Today 4/11/2019

Boston University Study Suggests CTE Diagnosis In Living Patients Possible

WCVB ABC 4/11/2019

Doctors May Have Found a Way to Reveal Concussion Damage in Living Football Players

TIME 4/11/2019

CTE in Pro Football Players: Evidence Piles Up

Medpage Today 4/10/2019

Former NFL Players Have Higher Tau Levels Than Non-Athletes

Healio 4/10/2019

NFL Retirees Help Scientists Develop Early Test for Brain Condition CTE

HealthDay News 4/10/2019

Study Suggests Path To Detecting CTE In The Living

ESPN 4/10/2019

A Study Of NFL Players' Brains Might Help Diagnose CTE In The Living

CNN 4/10/2019

Brain Scans On Former NFL Players Detect Abnormal Proteins Found In CTE

NBC News 4/10/2019

CTE Researchers Discover Possible Step Toward Diagnostic Test For Living Patients 4/10/2019

Boston University Study Suggests A Way To Diagnose CTE In Living People

The Boston Globe 4/10/2019

CTE Researchers Discover Possible Step Toward Diagnostic Test For Living Patients

The Washington Post 4/10/2019

Study Raises Hopes Of Someday Using PET Scan To Link Brain Tau To CTE Symptoms

Reuters Health 4/10/2019

Brain Scans May Reveal Concussion Damage In Living Athletes

Associated Press 4/10/2019

Abnormal Levels of a Protein Linked to C.T.E. Found in N.F.L Players’ Brains, Study Shows

The New York Times 4/10/2019

Brain Scans May Reveal Concussion Damage in Living Athletes

NBC 10 Boston 4/10/2019


Kiwanis Help Those In Need

The Eagle-Tribune 1/13/2019

Gary Plummer Gets His Mind Right

Sports Illustrated 9/20/2018

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