Sharp Brains: Brain Fitness and Cognitive Health News

Neuroplasticity, Brain Fitness and Cognitive Health News

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Growing debate about the ethics and regulation of direct-to-consumer transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS)

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Accord­ing to the adver­tis­ing hype, you too can enjoy incred­i­ble neur­al and psy­cho­log­i­cal ben­e­fits in the com­fort of your own home by using a sim­ple elec­tri­cal device that offers tran­scra­nial direct cur­rent stim­u­la­tion (tDCS). For instance, three dif­fer­ent mod­els of tDCS devices sold online claim to improve mood, increase cre­ativ­i­ty, enhance mem­o­ry, accel­er­ate learn­ing, and com­bat pain and depres­sion. For the low, low price of between $99 and $189.95, you get a com­pact hand­held device with easy-to-use con­trols and two elec­tri­cal leads that end in small sponges. These sponges are dipped into saline solu­tion to make them cur­rent-car­ry­ing elec­trodes, then placed against your head. The web­sites typ­i­cal­ly show the sponges locat­ed on either side of the fore­head, but point out that they need to be placed else­where on the skull to acti­vate dif­fer­ent parts of the brain, depend­ing on the desired out­come.

Wher­ev­er you place the sponges, when you switch on the unit, you’re pump­ing elec­tric cur­rent into your brain, although not very much.

Read the rest of this entry »

Bioethicists call for stronger oversight of direct-to-consumer neurotechnologies

Bioethi­cists call for over­sight of poor­ly reg­u­lat­ed, con­sumer-grade neu­rotech­nol­o­gy prod­ucts (Med­ical News):

The mar­ket­ing of direct-to-con­sumer “neu­rotech­nolo­gies” can be entic­ing: apps that diag­nose a men­tal state, and brain devices that improve cog­ni­tion or “read” one’s emo­tion­al state. How­ev­er, many of these increas­ing­ly pop­u­lar prod­ucts aren’t ful­ly sup­port­ed by sci­ence and have lit­tle to no reg­u­la­to­ry over­sight, which pos­es Read the rest of this entry »

February 26–28th: Save the Date for the 2019 SharpBrains Virtual Summit and help shape the Future of Brain Health

Imag­ine a free annu­al brain check-up — who should take it, and how could it help prevent/ delay/ treat cog­ni­tive decline and Alzheimer’s Dis­ease?

Imag­ine your smart­phone can detect ear­ly signs of depres­sion or Parkinson’s Dis­ease — would you like to know? Who else should know … or not know?

Imag­ine a videogame cleared by the FDA to treat ADHD or sub­stance abuse — how will doc­tors pre­scribe it, patients access it, and insur­ers pay for it?

Imag­ine being respon­si­ble for the health & well­ness of 100,000 peo­ple — how will you help them nav­i­gate inter­ven­tions such as breathing/ exercise/ meditation/ apps/ biofeedback/ tDCS to reg­u­late stress?

Imag­ine invest­ing $100 mil­lion in star­tups devel­op­ing non­in­va­sive, dig­i­tal neu­rotech­nolo­gies — where, and how, will you find great oppor­tu­ni­ties to gen­er­ate finan­cial and social returns?


The 2019 Sharp­Brains Vir­tu­al Sum­mit (Feb­ru­ary 26–28th, 2019)  will fea­ture over forty of the world’s top experts, inno­va­tors and investors aim­ing to improve brain health and per­for­mance for all in light of grow­ing neu­ro­science and dig­i­tal tech.

Learn More and Reserve your Spot HERE

Transcranial Direct Current Stimulation shows early promise to ameliorate depression, especially if combined with other therapies and dosage optimized

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Tran­scra­nial Direct Cur­rent Stim­u­la­tion Promis­ing for Major Depres­sive Dis­or­der (Psy­chi­a­try Advi­sor):

Tran­scra­nial direct cur­rent stim­u­la­tion (tDCS) is an inves­tiga­tive modal­i­ty for major depres­sive dis­or­der (MDD) that has shown some promis­ing results. Though it has a while before it is approved by the US Food and Drug Admin­is­tra­tion, clin­i­cians and patients have been clam­or­ing for an effec­tive treat­ment for MDD that is not asso­ci­at­ed with harm­ful adverse effects. Read the rest of this entry »

FDA clears deep transcranial magnetic stimulation device to treat obsessive-compulsive disorder

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Brain­sWay’s Brain Stim­u­la­tion Device Receives FDA Approval to Treat Obses­sive-Com­pul­sive Dis­or­der (IEEE Spec­trum):

In 2013, Jerusalem-based Brain­sWay began mar­ket­ing a new type of brain stim­u­la­tion device that uses mag­net­ic puls­es to treat major depres­sive dis­or­der.

Now, thanks to pos­i­tive results in a study of 100 patients, the com­pa­ny has received approval from the U.S. Food and Drug Admin­is­tra­tion (FDA) to mar­ket the device for a sec­ond psy­chi­atric condition—obsessive-compulsive dis­or­der (OCD) 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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