Traumatic brain injuries (TBIs) have been thrust into the spotlight thanks to the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, and now military researchers say they are slowly coming to better understand the mysterious condition. A number of recent studies have uncovered some of the most significant side effects of TBIs, Stars and Stripes reports.

Among the most important studies was one that showed TBI patients may be at risk for a higher building up of a protein known as tau, which is often associated with the conditions such as Alzheimer's disease. There is also a study underway meant to look for biomarkers of certain diseases in patients with TBI.

Such studies aim to bring the challenges many TBI patients face to the forefront. Some of the side effects of the injury can go unnoticed because there are no physical symptoms, but researchers hope their findings will raise awareness.

"You can't see it," Ann McKee, a doctor from the New England VA Medical Center, told the publication. "Even if you were to look at the brain in your hands, there would be no obvious injury."

Any progress will certainly aid a large number of soldiers. According to the Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America, between 10 and 20 percent of vets of those wars suffered a TBI.