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Neuroscience study indicates the narcolepsy drug modafinil enhances cognitive control in healthy people

The drug modafinil, which was developed to treat narcolepsy (excessive sleeping), appears to enhance some cognitive functions according to a new randomized double-blind study published in Neuropsychopharmacology.

“An essential function of executive processes is the cognitive control of interferences by distracting and conflicting information to facilitate goal-directed behavior in everyday life,” said study author Benjamin Becker, a professor at the University of Electronic Science and Technology of China and member of the neuSCAN Lab.

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Elon Musk’s neuroscience startup unveils pig with computer chip in its brain

Billionaire entrepreneur Elon Musk‘s neuroscience startup Neuralink unveiled a pig that has had a coin-sized computer chip in its brain for two months, demonstrating an early step toward the goal of curing human diseases with the same type of implant.

San Francisco-based Neuralink aims to implant wireless brain-computer interfaces that include thousands of electrodes in the most complex human organ to help cure neurological conditions like Alzheimer’s, dementia and spinal cord injuries and ultimately fuse humankind with artificial intelligence.

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Neurotechnology overview: Why we need a treaty to regulate weapons controlled by … thinking

Elon Musk’s newest venture, Neuralink, is attempting to wire brains directly to computers. The start-up’s vision is to insert thousands of tiny threads into the neurons of your brain.

The other ends of the threads are attached to chips, embedded under the skin on your head and wirelessly connected to a detachable Bluetooth ‘pod’ behind your ear, enabling you to control a phone or another device with your thoughts.  The company has already successfully tested the technology in monkeys and aims to start testing it in humans.

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The first US clinical trial of using an in-brain chip to fight opioid addiction is now underway

Opioid addiction is easily one of the top widespread healthcare issues facing the U.S., and research indicates we’re nowhere near achieving any kind of significant mitigating solution.

 

But a team of medical researchers working at the West Virginia University Rockefeller Neuroscience Institute (RNI) and West Virginia University Medicine (WVU) are beginning a new clinical trial of a solution that uses brain-embedded technology to potentially curb opioid addiction in cases that have resisted other methods of treatment.

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Arianna Huffington’s Thrive Global is buying a startup that uses neuroscience to boost app usage

When Arianna Huffington  stepped down from her role at the Huffington Post to start Thrive Global, she said the goal of her new business was to help a generation “avoid the burnout that all too often comes with success today.”

In practice, that has meant creating a business that sells mindfulness and general health and wellness tips and tricks to a cohort of corporations that believe increased mental and physical health can lead to greater on-the-job productivity.

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This startup just raised $8 million to help busy doctors assess the cognitive health of 50 million seniors

All over the globe, the population of people who are aged 65 and older is growing faster than every other age group. According to United Nations data, by 2050, one in six people in the world will be over age 65, up from one in 11 right now. Meanwhile, in Europe and North America, by 2050, one in four people could be 65 or older.

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Rice University research seeks brain-to-brain communication

A fruit fly bounces against the rounded sides of a petri dish, its wings outstretched. The dance is typically reserved for finding a mate — but this fly isn’t controlling its own movements. Jacob Robinson’s team is. Robinson, an associate professor of engineering at Rice University, is hesitant to call this process mind control. But he’s definitely directing the fly to make certain moves.

“People have identified specific neurons in these creatures that control certain behaviors,” Robinson said. “So, when we activate those neurons we should be able to see those flies immediately perform those behaviors.”

Neurotechnology holds the key to a healthy ageing population in 2050

If we use history as a guide, it is unlikely that we will see a glorious transformation of all medicine over the next 30 years.

 

The generalisation coined by the American futurist Roy Amara — that we tend to overestimate the effect of a technology in the short run and underestimate its effect in the long run — certainly applies to healthcare and the life sciences.

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Researchers create first mind-controlled robot arm that works well without surgery

All over the globe, the population of people who are aged 65 and older is growing faster than every other age group. According to United Nations data, by 2050, one in six people in the world will be over age 65, up from one in 11 right now. Meanwhile, in Europe and North America, by 2050, one in four people could be 65 or older.

The mind-controlled robot in this experiment also showed a high degree of motor control, as it’s able to track a computer cursor as it moves across a screen.

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Neurobehavioral health company BlackThorn pulls in $76 million from GV to treat mental disorders

There are numerous challenges to finding effective treatments for mental disorders. However, BlackThorn Therapeutics, a neurobehavioral health company using machine learning to create personalized medicine for mental health, is betting its technological approach to finding drugs that work will put it ahead of the competition.

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As Alzheimer’s costs soar, startups like Neurotrack raise cash to diagnose and treat the disease

As studies show that early diagnosis and preventative therapies can help prevent the onset of Alzheimer’s, startups that are working to diagnose the disease earlier are gaining more attention and funding.

That’s a boon to companies like Neurotrack, which closed on $21 million in new financing led by the company’s previous investor, Khosla Ventures, with participation from new investors Dai-ichi Life and SOMPO Holdings.

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Lenovo leads $10M investment in 6-legged robot maker Vincross

Vincross, the company behind the six-legged robot Hexa, said on Tuesday that it has picked up $10 million in a Series A+ funding round led by Lenovo Capital, the startup fund managed by Lenovo  Group.

 

Returning investor GGV Capital and newcomer Seekdource Capital also participated. The company declined to disclose its latest valuation but said the proceeds will go toward research and development as well as new product lines.

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Researchers are putting fish into augmented reality tanks

Researchers at the New Jersey Institute of Technology, while testing the “station keeping” functions of the glass knifefish, have created an augmented reality system that tricks the animal’s electric sensing organs in real time.

 

The fish keeps itself hidden by moving inside of its various holes/homes and the researchers wanted to understand what kind of autonomous sensing functions it used to keep itself safe.

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