Ten Key Innovation Signals to Better Serve the Cognitive & Brain Health Needs of an Aging Population


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Synopsis

These are Ten Important Signals to help Reinvent Brain Health
in the Digital Age we live in.

It’s been a busy year, with hundreds of studies and media
stories about brain health, neuroplasticity, lifestyle, digital
health and emerging neurotechnologies.

To summarize where we are, and to better prepare for
the opportunities and challenges in the year ahead, let’s
step back for a minute.

Let’s first take a look at the big picture presented in the
article Both
Important and Urgent: Getting ready to serve the Cognitive
& Brain Health needs of an Aging Population
,
prepared by David Stoller at the new Canadian Centre for
Aging and Brain Health Innovation (CC-ABHI):

“The urgency to develop innovative new technologies that will
support brain health is closely linked to the fact that a
growing proportion of the global population is living longer
than at any other time in history. As this population
ages, the need to maintain brain health and/or manage
declining cognitive function will have far-reaching impact
both socially and economically.” — David Stoller @ CC-ABHI.

Good news is, scientists, technologists and entrepreneurs are
working hard on this worldwide, as evidenced by the wealth of
insights and initiatives discussed by 200+ participants in 15
countries during the 2016 SharpBrains
Virtual Summit
 (December 6-8th).

The list of insights and initiatives coming from the 3-day
event is too long to detail (I encourage you to
access the slidedecks and recordings here); let me
just highlight Ten Important Signals to help
Reinvent Brain Health in the Digital Age
 we live
in:

  1.  “Our health starts and ends with brain health,”
    as Dr. Sandra Bond Chapman, Founder
    and Chief Director of the Center for BrainHealth at The
    University of Texas at Dallas, reminded us.
  2.  “There is too little wisdom in brain health (as
    practiced today),” cautioned Dr. Peter
    Whitehouse
    , Professor of Neurology at Case
    Western Reserve University.
  3.  The American Academy of Clinical
    Neuropsychology (AACN)
     announced a
    new Disruptive Technology Initiative focused on
    “assessment and/or intervention-prevention-improvement of
    cognitive functions, accessible to the entire population.”
  4.  Both the National Institute of Mental
    Health (NIMH)
     and the Canadian
    Centre for Aging and Brain Health Innovation
    (CC-ABHI)
     shared substantial funding
    programs to help start-ups access seed capital to develop
    and commercialize evidence-based digital brain health
    platforms.
  5.  Venture investors see a
    burgeoning landscape and future of the mind training
    spa
    ce.
  6.  Many pioneers are working on ways to harness
    neuroplasticity for good, via cognitive assessments and
    therapies (BrainHQ, Akili, Click Therapeutics,
    Cogniciti, SBT Group
    ) mindfulness apps
    (Claritas Mindsciences), EEG
    (Emotiv) and virtual reality
    (MindMaze).
  7.  A growing number of pharma companies,
    from Merck to Janssen, is investing in digital
    therapeutics by developing tools, licensing them, even
    investing in start-ups in the space.
  8.  “Clinically-guided” video capture of behavior can aid
    in diagnosis…behavior imaging, augmented by deep learning, will
    lead to real precision medicine, thanks to firms
    like Behavior Imaging
    Solutions, MyndYou, Pear Therapeutics
    , and
    more.
  9.  Old and new players in
    education—Pearson, ETS, UC Berkeley, the
    Arrowsmith School
    — are developing digital and
    in-person programs to promote lifelong brain development.
  10.  The Coaches and Psychologists of the
    Future–exemplified by the Institute of
    Coaching, The Synapse System, the new Watson
    Centre for Brain Health
    –are already augmenting their
    practices with latest brain & cognition findings and
    digital neurotechnologies.

As you can see, a lot is happening. And a lot more will happen
in 2017.

On behalf of the SharpBrains team and
community, Happy Holidays and Prosperous New
Year!

Tags: brain, brain health, digital age, education, health, innovation, psychology

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