Sharp Brains: Brain Fitness and Cognitive Health News

Neuroplasticity, Brain Fitness and Cognitive Health News


Survey: Have you ever used technologies or products for brain enhancement?


Question: Have you ever used–for yourself or for others–technologies or products that you think would fall into the category of brain enhancement? a) If Yes, what did you use and what lessons learned can you share? b) If No, what issues would you like to see addressed before considering doing so?

Please provide brief answers and contribute to the conversation…
*Via our LinkedIn Group
*Via our Facebook Page


Note: As a token of appreciation, we will issue 3 complimentary passes for most insightful respondents to participate at the upcoming 2017 SharpBrains Virtual Summit: Brain Health & Enhancement in the Digital Age (December 5-7th). Names will be announced on Monday, November 20th, so please don’t wait to share your insights 🙂

Ethical issues raised around deep brain stimulation (DBS) research

Researchers grapple with the ethics of testing brain implants (Science):

“In 2003, neurologist Helen Mayberg of Emory University in Atlanta began to test a bold, experimental treatment for people with severe depression, which involved implanting metal electrodes deep in the brain in a region called area 25. The initial data were promising; eventually, they convinced a device company, St. Jude Medical in Saint Paul, to sponsor a 200-person clinical trial dubbed BROADEN.

This month, however, Read the rest of this entry »

Are you familiar with these research findings and technologies revolutionizing Brain & Mental Health?


Try adding 3 and 8 in your head.

That was easy. Now, trying adding 33 and 88. That was probably more difficult. Finally, try adding 333 and 888.

Time for SharpBrains’ October e-newsletter, this time discussing a range of research findings and technologies revolutionizing brain and mental health.

New thinking about cognition, brain and mind:

Emerging toolkit for brain health & enhancement:

News about the 2017 SharpBrains Virtual Summit (December 5-7th):

And finally, a couple of fun brain teasers to start the week of the right foot:


Have a great month of November!

The SharpBrains Team

“We need people-centered wellness solutions that integrate brain health factors” — Charlie Hartwell, Operating Partner at the Bridge Builders Collaborative

Question: Charlie, please share 1-2 major brain health needs you observe right now whose solution demands a creative and significant tech-enabled innovation.

Answer: I’d encourage people to remember that Brain Health is just part of overall Whole Person Health.  Brain health solutions may reduce some disease symptoms but not help achieve actual wellness.  We need people-centered wellness solutions that integrate brain health factors.

What advice would you give an entrepreneur launching an innovation to address that?

Think hard about the way to grow and through what distribution channel you want to bring your solution. No distribution, no innovation.

— Charlie Hartwell is the Operating Partner at the Bridge Builders Collaborative, helping fund and support the visions of social entrepreneurs building bridges in the mind training space. Charlie is a Harvard Business School graduate who has led, founded, run and worked in organizations in 16 different industries. He will serve as a Judge in the first Brainnovations Pitch Contest hosted by the 2017 SharpBrains Virtual Summit: Brain Enhancement in the Digital Age (December 5-7th, 2017).

— Brainnovations Judging Panel

10 Must-Do Priorities to Reinvent Brain Health in the Digital Age


To shape the strongest and most timely agenda for the upcoming 2016 SharpBrains Virtual Summit (December 6-8th), we asked our distinguished Steering Committee to discuss key challenges and opportunities to Reinvent Brain Health in the Digital Age.

A number of highly stimulating conversations led to the following ten priorities, which will serve as our guide to invite world-class experts and pioneers to speak at the Summit. Stay tuned!

  • 1. Brain health for what:  How can we better link brain health and other meaningful outcomes such as lifelong learning, workplace performance and resilience, general happiness and well-being?
  • 2. Incorporate community into the brain health mix: What role should community and family members play, and how can technology aid their efforts; for example by providing access to medical records and easing communication with doctors and caregivers?
  • 3. Expand monitoring of brain function: How will we effectively monitor (and self-monitor) brain function and health? Given strong agreement with “Doctors should monitor cognitive health systematically, especially when prescribing new medicaments,”  what role can pharmaceutical companies and insurers play in making that happen?
  • 4. Harness Big Data and machine learning: What role can artificial intelligence play in brain health, and how will we measure the brain health of AI-enhanced systems? How can we use AI symbiotically with the human part of the equation?
  • 5. Accelerate scientific validation of digital medicine initiatives: What techniques and approaches, beyond randomized controlled trials, can help assess what works and what doesn’t, and accelerate the innovation process and help ensure proper adoption?
  • 6. Mastering the digital toolkit: What are the Pros and Cons of the growing range of non-invasive neurotechnologies–cognitive training, meditation apps, virtual/ augmented reality, EEG, tDCS, ultrasound, and more.
  • 7. Improve brain literacy: How are we going to educate and empower everyone with essential knowledge and best practices, increasing the emphasis on enhancement and prevention?
  • 8. Personalize brain health prevention and treatments: What kind of one-time or on-going brain/ mental health assessment can help pinpoint individual needs, and how can brain-computer interactions help create a bidirectional relationship between a person and the surrounding technology?
  • 9. Invest in early brain development: How do we act on the research showing early childhood interventions improve brain health and alleviate downstream societal problems? What  types of digital exposures help, and which ones hurt?
  • 10. Engage non-medical funding sources: What is the most important (and well-funded) “low-hanging-fruit” in education, sports, the military, large corporations, where brain health innovation should be part of the solution, and how can scalable, digital tools become part of the conversation and budgets?


Learn more & register Here (10%-off discount code: sharp2016)

Nominate a great speaker Here

Have a great month of September!

Check out the Summit Agenda and Reserve Your Spot

Learn all about the 2017 SharpBrains Virtual Summit in less than 2 minutes

Search for anything brain-related in our article archives

About SharpBrains

As seen in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, BBC News, CNN, Reuters, and more, SharpBrains is an independent market research firm and think tank tracking health and performance applications of brain science.

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