Welcome to a new edition of SharpBrains’ e‑newsletter, featuring eight timely scientific and industry news plus a few fun teasers to appreciate our unique human brains.
#1. Could I be wrong? Exploring research on cognitive bias, curiosity, intellectual humility, and lifelong learning
“None of us thinks that our beliefs and attitudes are incorrect; if we did, we obviously wouldn’t hold those beliefs and attitudes. Yet, despite our sense that we are usually correct, we must accept that our views may sometimes turn out to be wrong. This kind of humility isn’t simply virtuous—the research suggests that it results in better decisions, relationships, and outcomes. So, the next time you feel certain about something, you might stop and ask yourself: Could I be wrong?”
#2. Great interview on bilingualism, sports, education and neuroplasticity — en español
#3. Should older politicians, and other leaders, undergo cognitive testing? The debate continues … here are some good comments from the online debate we had last summer:
- PRO: “Definitely. We routinely screen applicants for a wide range of jobs. Apply for the police, you will be tested. Join the military, you will be evaluated. Should we not know if a candidate for the highest position in the country has a serious emotional, intellectual or psychological impairment?”
- CON: “I disagree because these tests are very bad at predicting how good someone would be in leading a country. It doesn’t require the ability to store a lot of information in your working memory. Being a good leader requires only one essential thing: having the right priorities.”
- IT DEPENDS: “Who makes the test? What cognitive metrics do we use? The biases in that design could lead to significant unexpected or even intentionally skewed results.”
#4. Click Therapeutics raises further $52M to build up digital therapeutics pipeline for depression, insomnia, smoking cessation and more
What a year for Click and for digital therapeutics!
#5. The American Medical Association’s (AMA) to ease access to remote Cognitive Behavioral Therapy Monitoring
The road to heaven is paved with good decisions…
#6. FDA-approved, Cybin-sponsored clinicial trial to measure ketamine’s impact on the brain via Kernel Flow neuroimaging helmet
“The word psychedelic means ‘mind-manifesting,’ but what has been missing is useful ‘mind-imaging’—the ability to dynamically trace the neural correlates of human conscious experience. Conventional neuroimaging just isn’t dynamic enough to study the psychedelic experience in the brain as it happens. This study of ketamine’s psychedelic effects while wearing headgear equipped with sensors to record brain activity could open up new frontiers of understanding” — Dr. Alex Belser, Cybin’s Chief Clinical Officer
#7. Beacon Biosignals raises $27M to scale EEG, AI-based neurobiomarker discovery platform
“analyzing EEGs is labor intensive and interpretation of these tests can vary from one clinician to another..…Beacon Biosignals has assembled what it claims is one of the world’s largest clinical EEG databases. By applying its proprietary machine-learning algorithms to the database, the company says it has identified neurobiomarkers—biological indicators that are associated with certain groups of patients, drug activity, and therapeutic efficacy.”
#8. Amyloid-related imaging abnormalities (ARIA) found in approximately 40% of patients taking “Alzheimer’s drug” Aduhelm
Not good, yet completely predictable, and let’s remember this is for a “treatment” costing as much as $100,000/ year with exactly ZERO proven clinical benefit: “…The researchers found 425 cases in the combined aducanumab group experienced ARIA (41.3%), and ARIA-edema was identified in 362 patients or 35.2%. Of them, 94 (26%) had symptoms, such as headache, confusion, dizziness and nausea. They found ARIA-microhemorrhage and ARIA-superficial siderosis in 197 patients (19.1%) and 151 patients (14.7%), respectively.”
Finally, Let’s Thank our unique Human Brains and Minds with a few family-friendly riddles
Q: What does, “you must come and visit us sometime!” actually mean?
Wishing you and yours a Happy & Healthy Hanukkah, December and Christmas,
The SharpBrains Team