MedRhythms secured $25 million in Series B funding to advance its digital therapy platform aimed at measuring and improving someone’s ability to walk after they have experienced a neurologic injury or disease … Company co-founder and CEO Brian Harris was a neurologic music fellow at Spaulding Rehabilitation Hospital in Boston, treating people with stroke and brain deficits with music. He began getting questions from patients and families on how they could access similar care outside of the hospital. Not seeing a suitable alternative, he started MedRhythms with entrepreneur Owen McCarthy in 2016. [Read more…] about Integrating music, movement and stroke rehabilitation, MedRhythms raises $25M to develop and commercialize digital therapeutic
Brain/ Mental Health
Welcome to a new edition of SharpBrains’ e‑newsletter, featuring nine scientific reports and industry developments to help promote lifelong brain health.
#1. A must-read, and must-practice: Promote brain plasticity and keep your mind at ease by taking your daily “exercise pill”
#2. If cognitive stimulation came in a pill it’d be worth a quadrillion, give or take a few trillions: Study finds that cognitive activity in old age may delay the onset of dementia by 5 years
#3. “A young child with low cognitive control is also more likely to develop anxiety later on in childhood, while one with a higher capacity will be more resilient to stress. Raising cognitive control could both treat anxiety in young children and potentially prevent it from becoming worse over time” — Helping young brains fight off anxiety by training and raising cognitive control
“In a national survey last fall, 36% of adults in the U.S. – including 61% of young adults – reported feeling “serious loneliness” during the pandemic. Statistics like these suggest people would be itching to hit the social scene. But if the idea of making small talk at a crowded happy hour sounds terrifying to you, you’re not alone. Nearly half of Americans reported feeling uneasy about returning to in-person interaction regardless of vaccination status.”
“The stress of the pandemic has made an existing mental health crisis even more alarming. We’re seeing this firsthand in adolescents in classrooms across the country and in adults who are reporting symptoms of anxiety and depression at a rate four times pre-pandemic levels” — Ian Chiu, Managing Director at Owl Ventures
“The study demonstrates for the first time the beneficial neurobehavioral effect of a single NFB session in adult ADHD, and reinforces the notion that Event-related potentials (ERPs) could serve as useful diagnostic/prognostic markers of executive dysfunction.”
“Currently, early diagnosis of high-risk CP offers the opportunity for early intervention at a critical developmental plasticity window. The earlier we intervene, the better the outcome is.”
“Support for mental health has needed improvement for many years in the UK. The pathways for accessing services are convoluted, waiting lists are extensive, and outcomes are poor over the long term … Coming up with new ways to maintain good mental health, in a preventative way, will be as essential as providing tools for acute care and we believe technology has a significant role to play.” — Dr Peter Bloomfield, FCC’s head of Policy and Research
Wishing you a happy and healthy month of August,
The SharpBrains Team
NB: Please remember that, if you’re looking for some fun and varied cognitive exercise, you can always try these 25 Brain Teasers, Puzzles & Games that SharpBrains readers have enjoyed the most.
Riverside completes add-on investment to Wondr Health Platform (Private Equity Wire):
The Riverside Company, a global private investor focused on the smaller end of the middle market, has invested in eMindful, a provider of evidence-based, mindfulness programmes for everyday life and chronic conditions.
The investment is an add-on to Riverside’s Wondr Health (formerly Naturally Slim), a digital behavioral change company focused on weight management and preventing chronic disease within the employer-sponsored space. [Read more…] about Evidence-based, employer-focused meditation program eMindful acquired by digital behavioral change firm Wondr Health
In news sure to excite even the most melancholy of artificial intelligence-powered chatbots, mental health platform Woebot has closed its series B funding round with a whopping $90 million. [Read more…] about AI-powered Woebot raises $90M to scale up digital self-therapy platform
Dementia Comes 5 Years Later for Some (MedPage Today):
A cognitively active lifestyle that involves reading and processing information in old age may delay the onset of dementia in Alzheimer’s disease by as much as 5 years, a longitudinal study suggested.
Older adults who had the highest level of late-life cognitive activity had a mean onset age of Alzheimer’s dementia of 94, reported Robert Wilson, PhD, of Rush University Medical Center in Chicago, and colleagues.
In contrast, those with the lowest late-life cognitive activity levels developed dementia at age 89, they wrote in Neurology. [Read more…] about Study finds that cognitive activity in old age may delay the onset of dementia by 5 years
The Mental Health Tech Landscape Review, released today by Future Care Capital (FCC), not only recommends a range of measures to enable higher quality care through the use of technology, but it also shows that there is potential for the development of a wider range of different types of technology solution (as) there is the danger of mental healthcare “falling through the gaps”. [Read more…] about UK report identifies opportunities and gaps for digital tech to improve, not harm, mental health