Through our work in the Microsoft AI for Accessibility program, we have learned there are big gaps in mental health services around the globe. In some countries, there may only be one mental health professional per 100,000 people. When paired with the reality that 1 in 5 people have a mental health condition, we are asking how technology can and should be involved. In February, we shared our call for project proposals that aim to accelerate mental health research, data insights, and innovations using AI, and today we want to highlight the projects we’re supporting. Keep reading Microsoft Accessibility blog, including how to apply to further grants, Here.
Description: Quickly developing neurotechnologies will have an impact on entire industries, governments, and societies in the future. The Global Future Council on Neurotechnologies will explore these technological developments and their ethical implications for society. [Read more…] about The World Economic Forum hosts Global Future Council on Neurotechnologies in Dubai (November 10–12th)
NSF issues awards to advance a national research infrastructure for neuroscience (press release by the National Science Foundation):
“The National Science Foundation (NSF) has made 17 Next Generation Networks for Neuroscience (NeuroNex) awards to aid the research community as it pursues one of its grandest challenges: understanding the brain.
These projects will support the development of innovative, accessible and shared capabilities and resources, as well as theoretical frameworks and computational modeling to advance neuroscience research [Read more…] about The National Science Foundation (NSF) funds Neurotechnology Hubs and innovative tools to advance research on Brain & Behavior
“Advanced Brain Monitoring Inc was named the “Most Innovative Medical Device Company” by Global Health and Pharma at its 2016 Healthcare and Pharmaceutical awards. “This award recognizes our company’s successes in developing technologies which enable clinicians and clinical trial sponsors to profile brain health through the analysis of the brain’s electrical activity (EEG) during sleep and wake,” says Chris Berka, Advanced Brain Monitoring CEO…The company was recently awarded a $1.5 mm grant from National Institute of Health to expand its database of awake and sleep EEG in patients with neurodegenerative diseases. “The envisioned future is for routine brain health assessments during sleep and waking to be conducted in a manner similar to a mammogram or colonoscopy,” says Berka. “Ultimately, early detection will increase the likelihood that an intervention can be matched to the patient based on the presence of brain biomarkers and administered prior to the onset of cognitive decline.”
To learn more:
Successful innovators dissected key market & technology trends and models to validate and commercialize innovation, with a particular emphasis on how to create a loyal user base and gain mainstream distribution via a diversity of channels. [Read more…] about Lessons learned in bringing innovative brain fitness solutions to market
I was really interested in the recent critique of the BBC brain training experiment by Dr. Elizabeth Zelinski. I think Owens et al (2010) was a critical piece of research which was not conducted in the right way and was focusing on the wrong sample population. I totally agree with the comments by Dr. Zelinski regarding the potential for sample bias and the use of some questionable cognitive measures. However, I would like to take this critique further and question whether the study was value for money when there are other studies which cannot achieve funding but would, in my opinion, show the criticism/scepticism of the use-it-or-lose-it theory.
I think there is not enough criticism about the age of the sample population used in Owens et al. (2010). We have conclusive cognitive and neurological evidence that cognitive/neurological plasticity exists in young adults. There is also adequate evidence that neuroplasticity is evident in older adults. The critical point which I want to make about the sample population in Owens et al. study is that it did not target the correct sample population, that is, older adults who are at risk of cognitive/neuronal atrophy. It does not matter if younger adults improve on brain training tasks, or if skills picked up by younger adults from brain training are not transferred to other cognitive domains, simply because younger adults are good at these skills/cognitive functions. Therefore there is a possibility that ceiling or scaling effects mask the true findings in Owens et al. (2010), as indicated by Zelinski.
The recruitment of the sample population is also very concerning and I do not feel that their control group was appropriate. [Read more…] about Needed: funding for innovative research on slowing cognitive decline via cognitive training