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Epigenetics research opens potential door to prevent neurodevelopmental disorders

Sai Ma, for­mer Vir­ginia Tech bio­med­ical engi­neer­ing Ph.D. stu­dent, and Chang Lu, the Fred W. Bull pro­fes­sor of Chem­i­cal Engi­neer­ing at Vir­ginia Tech. Cred­it: Vir­ginia Tech

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Epi­ge­net­ic Changes Guide Devel­op­ment of Dif­fer­ent Brain Regions (Dana Foun­da­tion):

It’s one of the great­est stand­ing mys­ter­ies in neu­ro­science: Giv­en that each cell in the human body con­tains the same DNA, how, exact­ly, does the brain devel­op into dis­tinct func­tion­al regions, sup­port­ed by dif­fer­ent cell types? And how might that devel­op­men­tal pro­gram go awry, result­ing in neu­rode­vel­op­men­tal dis­or­ders like schiz­o­phre­nia or autism? The answers may be the epigenome Read the rest of this entry »

The Luria Neuroscience Institute announces new webinar series on Executive Functions, Dementia, TBI, Creativity and more

Hap­py to share that the Luria Neu­ro­science Insti­tute, an esteemed Part­ner of the 2017 Sharp­Brains Vir­tu­al Sum­mit, is host­ing a new webi­nar series aimed at bet­ter equip­ping pro­fes­sion­als help­ing those with men­tal health and with brain and brain dis­or­ders.

Dates and top­ics: Read the rest of this entry »

Next: Brain scans to identify children at high risk of developing multiple sclerosis (MS) before symptoms appear

White arrows indi­cate abnor­mal­i­ties on MRI brain scans in chil­dren with no symp­toms of mul­ti­ple scle­ro­sis.

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MS risk in chil­dren spot­ted with MRI brain scans (Yale News):

By the time mul­ti­ple scle­ro­sis (MS) is diag­nosed in chil­dren, it may be dif­fi­cult to pre­vent the dis­abil­i­ties and relaps­es that come with the dis­ease. In a new Yale School of Med­i­cine study, researchers exam­ined MRI brain scans to iden­ti­fy chil­dren at high risk of devel­op­ing MS before symp­toms appear, which Read the rest of this entry »

Witnessing an explosion of consumer-facing neurotechnologies to (potentially) harness lifelong neuroplasticity

Last week I shared some key sci­en­tif­ic, tech­no­log­i­cal and invest­ment trends rev­o­lu­tion­iz­ing Brain Health, based on my par­tic­i­pa­tion at the 2016 Sharp­Brains Vir­tu­al Sum­mit, and promised a sec­ond arti­cle more focused on the tech­nol­o­gy side of things.

Here it is 🙂

Just a few weeks after the Sharp­Brains Sum­mit I also attend­ed CES 2017. While I enjoyed the myr­i­ad emerg­ing tech­nolo­gies –autonomous vehi­cles, robot­ics, drones, aug­ment­ed and vir­tu­al real­i­ty head­sets, voice acti­vat­ed every­thing– I was most­ly struck by a firm named Halo Neu­ro­science. They have a fas­ci­nat­ing wear­able prod­uct, Halo Sport, claim­ing to accel­er­ate gains in strength, explo­sive­ness, endurance, and mus­cle mem­o­ry, improv­ing the brain’s response to ath­let­ic train­ing. It uses tDCS (tran­scra­nial direct cur­rent stim­u­la­tion), essen­tial­ly prim­ing move­ment-relat­ed cir­cuits of the brain to become more recep­tive to stim­uli, help­ing the brain wire in the prac­tice for improved future response.

The cutting edge of applied neuroplasticity

Both con­fer­ences allowed me to see the cut­ting edge of Read the rest of this entry »

Systematic evidence review finds cognitive behavioral therapy as effective as antidepressant medicines in treating depression

mentalhealthtreatmentsDepres­sion: Treat­ment Beyond Med­ica­tion (The Dana Foun­da­tion):

Major depres­sive dis­or­der affects near­ly 7 per­cent of peo­ple in the US aged 18 and up, accord­ing to the Depres­sion and Bipo­lar Sup­port Alliance. Those who seek treat­ment will most like­ly be pre­scribed a sec­ond-gen­er­a­tion anti­de­pres­sant med­ica­tion such as a selec­tive sero­tonin reup­take inhibitor (SSRI), tri­cyclic anti­de­pres­sant (TCA), or a monoamine oxi­dase inhibitor (MAOI). Some recent stud­ies, though, Read the rest of this entry »

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