190 Sharp Brains Issue a Call to Enhance Brain Health through Neuroplasticity, Big Data and Consumer Education

-– Sharp­Brains Vir­tu­al Sum­mit brings togeth­er glob­al lead­ers and inno­va­tors to advance the emerg­ing fields of applied neu­ro­science and brain fitness

The third annu­al vir­tu­al Sharp­Brains Vir­tu­al Sum­mit: Opti­miz­ing Health through Neu­ro­plas­tic­i­ty, Inno­va­tion and Data, held June 7–14th, con­clud­ed with a call to enhance brain health by har­ness­ing neu­ro­plas­tic­i­ty-based appli­ca­tions, big data plat­forms and con­sumer inter­est to aug­ment the tra­di­tion­al reliance on dis­ease-based phar­ma­co­log­i­cal inter­ven­tions and frag­ment­ed clin­i­cal trials.

The Sum­mit brought togeth­er 190 researchers, deci­sion-mak­ers and prac­ti­tion­ers across the tech­nol­o­gy, men­tal health, gam­ing and oth­er sec­tors to dis­cuss health opti­miza­tion and applied neu­ro­plas­tic­i­ty research and trends.

We are glad to see a grow­ing research-based toolk­it to empow­er con­sumers, patients and pro­fes­sion­als  to main­tain and enhance cog­ni­tion and brain health across the lifes­pan,” said Alvaro Fer­nan­dez, the Pro­duc­er of Sharp­Brains Sum­mit, and sum­mit speak­er, adding that “This is a crit­i­cal con­sid­er­a­tion as 84% of respon­dents to our 2012 Sharp­Brains sur­vey agreed/ strong­ly agreed with ‘Adults of all ages should take charge of their own “brain fit­ness” with­out wait­ing for their doc­tors to tell them to.’”

We can­not wait until 2025 for a “mag­ic bul­let” to be dis­cov­ered, to cure (or end or pre­vent) Alzheimer’s dis­ease and aging asso­ci­ated cog­ni­tive decline,” empha­sized Dr. Peter White­house, Pro­fes­sor of Neu­rol­ogy at Case West­ern Reserve Uni­ver­sity, adding that “We need a new cul­ture of life­long brain health to empow­er that 80% of the 38,000 adults over 50 sur­veyed in the 2010 AARP Mem­ber Opin­ion Sur­vey who indi­cated “Stay­ing Men­tally Sharp” as their top ranked inter­est and con­cern, not to men­tion youth, work­ers and elders fac­ing cog­ni­tive and emo­tional challenges.”

190 peo­ple attend­ed the con­fer­ence which fea­tured more than 40 speak­ers, 8 ple­nary ses­sions and 5 edu­ca­tion­al work­shops, on top of an Expo. To learn more about the full Agen­da, go to: www.sharpbrains.com/summit/

Top­ics dis­cussed include:

  • Brain­omics: why Cog­ni­tive brain health is a major dri­ver of eco­nom­ic growth – Dr. San­dra Bond Chap­man, Direc­tor, Cen­ter for Brain­Health at The Uni­ver­sity of Texas at Dallas
  • Crowd­sourc­ing big brain data to improve pub­lic brain health –  Dr. Robert Bilder, Chief of Med­ical Psy­chol­o­gy-Neu­ropsy­chol­o­gy, UCLA Semel Insti­tute for Neuroscience
  • Why Enriched Lifestyles build Cog­ni­tive Reserve and Health Cap­i­tal –  Dr. Yaakov Stern, Cog­ni­tive Neu­ro­science Divi­sion Leader, Colum­bia University
  • Where are the Brain Shops –  Dr. Ken­neth Kosik, Co-Direc­tor, UC San­ta Bar­bara Neu­ro­science Research Institute
  • Inte­gra­tive Neu­ro­science Data­bas­es to Trans­form Psy­chi­a­try –  Dr. Evian Gor­don, Exec­u­tive Chair­man, Brain Resource
  • Revamp­ing Alzheimer’s diag­no­sis and treat­ment –   Dr. Peter White­house, Pro­fes­sor, Case West­ern Reserve University
  • Adapt­ing our brain to aug­ment­ed worlds – Nolan Bush­nell, Founder, Atari,
  • Con­sumer Bio-inter­fac­ing for Gam­ing and Well­ness –  Stan­ley Yang, CEO, NeuroSky
  • Afford­able, scal­able brain mon­i­tor­ing through wire­less EEG – Tan Le, CEO, Emo­tiv Lifesciences
  • Mon­i­tor­ing Cog­ni­tion in the Home Envi­ron­ment – Dr. Hol­ly Jimi­son, Asso­ciate Pro­fes­sor, Ore­gon Health & Science
  • Train­ing brain net­works under­ly­ing atten­tion –  Dr. Michael Pos­ner, Pro­fes­sor Emer­i­tus, Uni­ver­sity of Oregon
  • Con­di­tions to max­i­mize cog­ni­tive train­ing effec­tive­ness  – Dr. Adam Gaz­za­ley, Direc­tor of the Neu­ro­science Imag­ing Cen­ter, UCSF
  • How to Edu­cate Con­sumers to be their own “Brain Fit­ness Coach­es”  –  Alvaro Fer­nan­dez, CEO, SharpBrains


All ses­sions are archived. Reporters can request access and inter­views by con­tact­ing SharpBrains.


About Sharp­Brains

Sharp­Brains is a mar­ket research firm devot­ed to help­ing orga­ni­za­tions, pro­fes­sion­als and con­sumers nav­i­gate applied neu­ro­science and brain health inno­va­tion. Sharp­Brains pub­lished The Sharp­Brains Guide to Brain Fit­ness, the first con­sumer guide to edu­cate and inform adults on the sub­ject, was rec­og­nized as a Best Book by AARP in 2011. Alvaro Fer­nan­dez, Sharp­Brains’ Co-Founder, was recent­ly named a Young Glob­al Leader by the World Eco­nom­ic Forum.

About the 2012 Sharp­Brains Vir­tu­al Summit

The annu­al Sharp­Brains Vir­tu­al Sum­mit is the pre­miere glob­al and vir­tu­al con­fer­ence to dis­cuss emerg­ing neu­ro­plas­tic­ity research, data-dri­ven tools and inno­v­a­tive best prac­tices to opti­mize health and per­for­mance across the lifespan.

Sum­mit Agen­da: 84% of respon­dents to a 2012 Sharp­Brains sur­vey (n=3,165) agreed/ strong­ly agreed with “Adults of all ages should take charge of their own “brain fit­ness” with­out wait­ing for their doc­tors to tell them to,” and 78% agreed/ strong­ly agreed with “I would per­son­ally take a brief assess­ment every year as an “annu­al men­tal check-up.” This grow­ing aware­ness demands new ways to har­ness neu­ro­plas­tic­ity across the lifes­pan to opti­mize health, pro­duc­tiv­ity and qual­ity of life, and high­lights mar­ket oppor­tu­ni­ties to devel­op and com­mer­cial­ize non-inva­sive solu­tions to mon­i­tor and enhance brain func­tion. Mean­ing­ful, human-cen­tered inno­va­tion to inte­grate lifestyle fac­tors such as aer­o­bic exer­cise with tar­geted inter­ven­tions such as med­i­ta­tion, cog­ni­tive train­ing and videogames, biofeed­back and cog­ni­tive behav­ioral ther­apy will require engag­ing empow­ered and con­nected con­sumers, employ­ees and patients where they are, going beyond cur­rent health­care frame­works and channels.

The 2012 Sharp­Brains Vir­tual Sum­mit gath­ered dozens of lead­ing experts and over a hun­dred inno­va­tors and ear­ly-adopters to sur­vey the state-of-the-art of applied neu­ro­plas­tic­ity and cog­ni­tive sci­ence, and to address:

  • How can empow­ered con­sumers nav­i­gate and inte­grate lifestyle/ tech­nol­ogy options today?
  • How can inno­va­tors and ear­ly-adopters help bridge exist­ing gaps between knowl­edge and prac­tice by 2015?
Speak­er Bios: Here.

Sum­mit Spon­sors includ­ed: the Arrow­smith Pro­gram. Brain Resource, the Alzheimer’s Research and Pre­ven­tion Foun­da­tion, Advanced Brain Tech­nolo­gies, About­My­Brain and Bracket.

Sum­mit Part­ners includ­ed a dozen uni­ver­si­ty-based research cen­ters and pro­fes­sion­al associations.

About SharpBrains

SHARPBRAINS is an independent think-tank and consulting firm providing services at the frontier of applied neuroscience, health, leadership and innovation.
SHARPBRAINS es un think-tank y consultoría independiente proporcionando servicios para la neurociencia aplicada, salud, liderazgo e innovación.

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