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Neuroplasticity, Brain Fitness and Cognitive Health News

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UT Dallas researcher secures $2.7m grant to better monitor and address TBI-related cognitive and functional deficits

-- Drs. Dan Krawczyk and Kihwan Han review MRI scans. Credit: Center for BrainHealth, Randy Anderson

– Drs. Dan Kraw­czyk and Kih­wan Han review MRI scans. Cred­it: Cen­ter for Brain­Health, Randy Ander­son

Sci­en­tist Gets Grant for Study of Vet­er­ans with Trau­mat­ic Brain Injuries (UT Dal­las release):

A researcher from the Cen­ter for Brain­Health at UT Dal­las has been award­ed a $2.7 mil­lion grant from the Depart­ment of Defense (DoD) under the Joint Warfight­er Med­ical Research Pro­gram.

The grant, award­ed to Dr. Daniel Kraw­czyk, deputy direc­tor of the Cen­ter for Brain­Health, will fund research, via a vir­tu­al tech­nol­o­gy plat­form, to improve cog­ni­tive and func­tion­al deficits for Read the rest of this entry »

Can biofeedback-based videogames help kids regulate anger and emotions?

Video Game With Biofeed­back Teach­es Chil­dren to Curb Their Anger (Sci­ence Dai­ly):

Chil­dren with seri­ous anger prob­lems can be helped by a sim­ple video game that hones their abil­i­ty to reg­u­late their emo­tions, finds a pilot study at Boston Children’s Hos­pi­tal. Results were pub­lished online Octo­ber 24 in the jour­nal Ado­les­cent Psy­chi­a­try Read the rest of this entry »

Dr. Sheryl Flynn on Getting Evidence-Based Rehab Video Games Into the Hands of Users

Dr. Fly­nn will dis­cuss her entre­pre­neur­ial jour­ney to get Evi­dence-Based Rehab Video Games Into the Hands of Users, at the upcom­ing 2012 Sharp­Brains Vir­tu­al Sum­mit (June 7–14th, 2012).

Dr. Sheryl Fly­nn is the founder and CEO of Blue Mar­ble Game Co, a seri­ous games com­pany that focus­es design and devel­op­ment of video games to enhance Read the rest of this entry »

Gaming and Neuroscience: Opportunities and Challenges

A cou­ple weeks ago I attend­ed the Enter­tain­ment Soft­ware and Cog­ni­tive Neu­rother­a­peu­tics Con­fer­ence, ESCoNS, at the Uni­ver­si­ty of Cal­i­for­nia San Fran­cis­co. The speak­ers’ talks were insight­ful, sur­pris­ing, and inspir­ing in many regards. The pur­pose of this meet­ing was to bring togeth­er great minds in a vari­ety of fields from neu­ro­science to game design and to come up with some ideas how to make game based cog­ni­tive train­ing a real­i­ty as an effec­tive ther­a­py for many of today’s most chal­leng­ing dis­or­ders and deficits. Many of the sci­en­tists also thought that game based ther­a­pies for cog­ni­tive deficits could be used as enhance­ment tools for healthy indi­vid­u­als as well. Read the rest of this entry »

June Update: High-Quality Summer Brain Reading

Let’s explore some  high-qual­i­ty new resources, announce­ments and stud­ies in this June edi­tion of the month­ly Sharp­Brains eNewslet­ter. The field is clear­ly on the move!

Por­traits of the Mind: Sev­er­al sharp brains (Rick, Karen, John, thanks!) strong­ly rec­om­mend the recent book  “Por­traits of the Mind: Visu­al­iz­ing the Brain from Antiq­uity to the 21st Cen­tury” (which includes the image on the left) as great read­ing and as a beau­ti­ful cof­fee table book.

Pro­mot­ing Healthy, Mean­ing­ful Aging Through Social Involve­ment: The cur­rent issue of Cere­brum includes the excel­lent in-depth arti­cle on the val­ue of vol­un­teer­ing pro­gram Expe­ri­ence Corps to pro­mote healthy and mean­ing­ful aging through social involve­ment.

Work­ing mem­o­ry train­ing can improve flu­id intel­li­gence: Final­ly, a pow­er­ful voice of com­mon sense. A new sci­en­tif­ic study con­cludes that “cog­ni­tive train­ing can be effec­tive and long-last­ing, but there are lim­it­ing fac­tors that must be con­sid­ered to eval­u­ate the effects of this train­ing, one of which is indi­vid­ual dif­fer­ences in train­ing per­for­mance. We pro­pose that future research should not inves­ti­gate whether cog­ni­tive train­ing works, but rather should deter­mine what train­ing reg­i­mens and what train­ing con­di­tions result in the best trans­fer effects, inves­ti­gate the under­ly­ing neur­al and cog­ni­tive mech­a­nisms, and final­ly, inves­ti­gate for whom cog­ni­tive train­ing is most use­ful.”

Lumos Labs rais­es $32.5m: Lumos Labs, the com­pany behind lumosity.com, has just raised the sin­gle largest amount of fund­ing in the space.

Devel­op­ing a Research Agen­da for Seri­ous Games: The recent trade book Com­puter Games and Instruc­tion brings togeth­er the lead­ing edge per­spec­tives of over a dozen sci­en­tists in the area of videogames and learn­ing, includ­ing this very insight­ful analy­sis by Harvard’s Chris Dede.

In the News: Brief arti­cles in the New York Times and a very pow­er­ful analy­sis in The New York Review of Books pro­vide use­ful clues about Brain Cal­is­then­ics, Bilin­gual Brains, and Debunk­ing Myths on Men­tal Ill­ness.

Emerg­ing Mil­i­tary Appli­ca­tions: 2 recent announce­ments show, in a mil­i­tary con­text, inno­v­a­tive ways to enhance brain func­tion­ing and per­for­mance both to help “nor­mal” and “clin­i­cal” (post-TBI) pop­u­la­tions.

We hope you enjoyed this newslet­ter. Please do feel free to share this with friends and col­leagues via Face­book, Twit­ter and LinkedIn, and have a great week­end and month of July!

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