“Whether we realize it or not, nearly all of us have dreamed of enhancing brain plasticity, or the brain’s capacity to change. This desire might become apparent when we visit a foreign country late in life and wish we could speak with the fluency of a native; when we hear an exquisite violin performance and [Read more…] about Harnessing neuroplasticity to drive and repair brain development
Very interesting new data reinforcing two main themes we have been analyzing for a while:
1) We better start paying serious attention (and R&D dollars) to lifestyle-based and non-invasive cognitive and emotional health interventions, which are mostly ignored in favor of invasive, drug-based options
2) Interventions will need to be personalized. The study below analyzes data at the country level, but the same logic applies to the individual level
- “The telephone survey of 2,678 adults aged 18 and older in the United States, France, Germany, Spain and Poland was conducted by researchers at the Harvard School of Public Health and [Read more…] about Alzheimer’s Disease: New Survey and Research Study on Awareness, Testing and Prevention
A new study suggests that virtual reality and other video games involving motion can enhance motor improvement after a stroke. The improvement seems to be greater than the one observed with traditional therapy.
This result is quite promising since 55 to 75% of stroke survivors experience motor problem in their arms.
The study was a meta-analysis that looked at 12 previously published studies, for a total of 195 patients. Most were observational studies in which the patients used a variety of virtual (e.g., Wii) and non-virtual (e.g., Glasstron) games during therapy. In the 5 randomized studies, a group of patients was assigned to standard therapy and another to virtual reality therapy. Patients in virtual reality therapy had 4.89 times higher chance of improvement in motor strength compared to patients in standard therapy.
Why would virtual reality therapy be more efficient?
It seems that virtual reality therapy stimulates neuroplasticity more than standard therapy. [Read more…] about Virtual Reality Games Help Stroke Patients Recover Motor Functions
The same way a brain fitness software program can help increase driving safety for older adults, simple cognitive tests may help determine whether a person can drive safely after a stroke.
A recent study analyzed 30 previous studies in which the participants’ driving skills after a stroke were tested in an on-road evaluation. 1,728 individuals with an average age of 61 were involved. On average, 9 months had passed between the stroke and the driving evaluation. Note that 54 percent of the participants passed the on-road evaluation.
The authors of the analysis looked for tests scores that could predict the actual driving evaluation outcome. They identified 3 simple cognitive tests that did quite well: [Read more…] about Cognitive Tests Help Determine who can Drive Safely after a Stroke
We mentioned in our recent market report that NovaVision had declared bankrupcy. The company tried to transform its business model in the last couple of years — obviously it didn’t work. Now the trustee is sharing a few more details and looking for ways to dispose of its assets:
The bankruptcy trustee has engaged The Magnum Group, Inc., to solicit offers for NovaVision’s assets which include the NovaVision Visual Restoration Therapy (VRT) system, a neuroplacticity (sic) platform that has been cleared by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for the treatment of stroke, traumatic brain injury, amblyopia (“lazy eye”) and optic nerve damage.
NovaVision has received a total investment of $49,200,000 since its founding in 2003 and has generated revenues of approximately $1,000,000 each year for the past three years. The company’s non-invasive computer-based neuroplacticity (sic) products have treated more than 3,000 patients worldwide. NovaVision estimates the total market opportunity for its portfolio of products to exceed 300,000 units in U.S. optometry, ophthalmology, neurology, and primary care practices as well as rehabilitation centers.
Games for Health and SharpBrains have partnered to bring you the first Cognitive Health Track in a Games for Health Conference, June 11–12th in Boston. If you are interested, in attending the conference, you can learn more and register Here.
To get a 15% off registration fees ($379), you can use discount code: sharp09, when you register Here.
Cognitive Health Track, Powered by SharpBrains
Thursday, June 11th
10.20 (50m) Bird’s Eye View of Cognitive Health Innovation
Speaker(s): Alvaro Fernandez, SharpBrains
Scientific, technological and demographic trends have converged to create a new $265m market in the US alone: serious games, software and online applications that can help people of all ages assess and train cognitive abilities. Alvaro Fernandez will provide a Bird’s Eye View of the science, market segments and trends, competitive landscape, and main challenges ahead, based on The State of the Brain Fitness Software Market 2009 report released in May, which included Research Executive Briefs prepared by 12 leading scientists and a survey of 2,000+ decision-makers and early adopters.
61% of respondents to the survey Strongly Agreed with the statement “Addressing cognitive and brain health should be a healthcare priority.” But, 65% Agreed/Strongly Agreed with “I don’t really know what to expect from products making brain claims.” In this session, Alvaro will publicly unveil the new book The SharpBrains Guide to Brain Fitness: 18 Interviews with Scientists, Practical Advice, and Product Reviews, To Keep Your Brain Sharp, co-authored by neuropsychologist Dr. Elkhonon Goldberg and himself, aimed at helping consumers and professionals understand and navigate this growing field.
11.20 (30m) The Allstate-Posit Science Partnership: Cognitive Training for Safer Driving
Speaker(s): Tom Warden, Allstate; Henry Mahncke, Posit Science
Evidence-based cognitive training programs have been available in retirement communities for several years. Now, they are reaching a younger population including Boomers through innovative partnerships, like insurers.
In October 2008 auto insurance company Allstate and brain fitness software developer Posit Science announced a research collaboration that could lead to “potentially the next big breakthrough in automobile safety”. The purpose of this session is to review novel ways of getting the science of cognitive training into the real world where it can help people. Representatives from Allstate and Posit Science will discuss why these partnerships work for insurers, developers, and end users. They will also provide a thorough review of the evaluation process a major partner goes through when selecting a cognitive training company.
12.00 (30m) What Consumers Buy and Why
Speaker(s): Lindsay Gaskins, Marbles: The Brain Store
Launched in October 2008, Marbles: The Brain Store is a retail store that [Read more…] about Cognitive Health Track at Games for Health Conference: Full Schedule Announced!