Sharp Brains: Brain Fitness and Cognitive Health News

Neuroplasticity, Brain Fitness and Cognitive Health News

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Initial study finds promise and limitations in using virtual reality (VR) to treat ADHD

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Giv­en the lim­i­ta­tions of exist­ing evi­dence-based ADHD treat­ments, i.e., stim­u­lant med­ica­tion and behav­ior ther­a­py — research on nov­el inter­ven­tion approach­es con­tin­ues to be impor­tant.

Cog­ni­tive train­ing is one such approach that has been sug­gest­ed as a poten­tial adjunct or even replace­ment for med­ica­tion treat­ment. While cog­ni­tive train­ing takes dif­fer­ent forms, e.g., com­put­er­ized atten­tion train­ing, work­ing mem­o­ry train­ing, the basic idea is that by repeat­ed­ly prac­tic­ing cog­ni­tive tasks relat­ed to atten­tion, one’s abil­i­ty to focus and attend will improve. In oth­er words, Read the rest of this entry »

Jan Samzelius, CEO of Brainnovations Winner NeuraMetrix, encourages pioneers to focus on “simple, elegant solutions to big problems”

What sur­prised you the most from the Judges’ ques­tions and feed­back dur­ing the Brain­no­va­tions Pitch Con­test last month?

Even with only a brief pre­sen­ta­tion the judges imme­di­ate­ly got the poten­tial impact of our tech­nol­o­gy to mea­sure and mon­i­tor brain health and began to think about oth­er appli­ca­tions for us – sev­er­al we had not thought about. That was fun.

In a nut­shell, what is the core idea behind Neu­raMetrix?

Typ­ing Cadence is among the strongest habit we have. If the brain is attacked by a dis­ease, the habit will begin to break – very slow­ly and in very small incre­ments. Our way of mea­sur­ing is so sen­si­tive that we can pick up changes at the lev­el of 1/100th of sec­ond – many orders of mag­ni­tude bet­ter than today’s tools.

When and how did the idea come to you?

Com­ing from data secu­ri­ty, our first idea was to use typ­ing cadence for authen­ti­ca­tion, and then were alert­ed to the brain health appli­ca­tion by an out­sider. Read the rest of this entry »

Non-invasive brain stimulation in children creates opportunities and risks

TMSvtDCSBrain Stim­u­la­tion in Chil­dren Spurs Hope—and Con­cern (Sci­en­tif­ic Amer­i­can):

The idea of using mag­nets or elec­tric cur­rents to treat psy­chi­atric or learn­ing dis­or­ders — or just to enhance cog­ni­tion — has gen­er­at­ed a flur­ry of excite­ment over the past ten years. The tech­nique is thought to work by acti­vat­ing neur­al cir­cuits or by mak­ing it eas­i­er for neu­rons to fire. The research is still in its infan­cy, but at least 10,000 adults have under­gone Read the rest of this entry »

Q: What do people with schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, depression, addiction, obsessive-compulsive disorder, and anxiety have in common? A: A brain with similar gray-matter loss

graymatter_comparison

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Dif­fer­ent men­tal dis­or­ders cause same brain-mat­ter loss, study finds (press release):

A meta-analy­sis of 193 brain-imag­ing stud­ies shows sim­i­lar gray-mat­ter loss in the brains of peo­ple with diag­noses as dif­fer­ent as schiz­o­phre­nia, depres­sion and addiction…The find­ings call into ques­tion a long­stand­ing ten­den­cy to dis­tin­guish psy­chi­atric dis­or­ders chiefly by their symp­toms rather than their under­ly­ing brain pathol­o­gy. Read the rest of this entry »

About SharpBrains

As seen in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, BBC News, CNN, Reuters,  SharpBrains is an independent market research firm tracking how brain science can improve our health and our lives.

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