President Obama launches $100 million project to map the brain

Posted under Blog on April 4th, 2013 by Editorial Team / No Comments

US President Barack Obama has announced funding for the BRAIN Initiative, a new project which aims to find treatments for some of the most common brain disorders, such as Alzheimer’s disease.

The campaign, which is supported by major pharma companies including Roche, Pfizer and Lilly, will begin in 2014 to map the complex interactions between cells and circuits in the brain

President Obama said this week: “We can identify galaxies light years away, study particles smaller than an atom, but we still haven’t unlocked the mystery of the three pounds of matter that sit between our ears”.

Leading the BRAIN Initiative, which stands for Brain Research through Advancing Innovative Neurotechnologies, will be the National Institutes of Health, the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, and the National Science Foundation. These agencies will work alongside companies and private research institutes, including the Allen Institute for Brain Science, the Howard Hughes Medical Institute, the Kavli Foundation and the Salk Institute for Biological Studies.

The research will begin by focusing on fundamental science as researchers try to understand the language of the brain and develop tools to interpret that language, said Francis Collins, director of the National Institutes of Health. He said recent advances in technology have made it possible to start looking deeper into the brain now.

Increased research funding should improve the likelihood for finding effective treatments for diseases like Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease and autism.

Howard Federoff, executive vice president of health sciences at Georgetown University Medical Center and a neurologist who studies Parkinson’s disease, described the initiative as “the greatest opportunity for clinical medicine. The implication is that it would offer with that understanding the potential for new therapies that could modify those diseases.”

Tags: Alzheimer's, autism, Obama, Parkinson's, Roche



Browse Categories
(Click to expand)

(Click to expand)


Alzheimer's symptoms Alzheimers cocoa eye test Google Glass Harvard pressure sensor Seattle Stanford vampire mice Vitamin E