S4780 - Keynote: Video Games and the Future of Cognitive Enhancement
( Associate Professor, UCSF )
Dr. Adam Gazzaley obtained an M.D. and a Ph.D. in Neuroscience at the Mount Sinai School of Medicine in New York, completed clinical residency in Neurology at the University of Pennsylvania, and postdoctoral training in cognitive neuroscience at UC Berkeley. He is the founding director of the Neuroscience Imaging Center at the UC San Francisco, an Associate Professor in Neurology, Physiology and Psychiatry, and Principal Investigator of a cognitive neuroscience laboratory. His laboratory studies neural mechanisms of perception, attention and memory, with an emphasis on the impact of distraction and multitasking on these abilities. His unique research approach utilizes a powerful combination of human neurophysiological tools, including functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI), electroencephalography (EEG) and transcranial stimulation (TES). A major accomplishment of his research has been to expand our understanding of alterations in the aging brain that lead to cognitive decline. His most recent studies explore how we may enhance our cognitive abilities via engagement with custom designed video games, neurofeedback and TES. Dr. Gazzaley has authored over 80 scientific articles, delivered over 300 invited presentations around the world, and his research and perspectives have been consistently profiled in high-impact media, such as The New York Times, New Yorker, Wall Street Journal, TIME, Discover, Wired, PBS, NPR, CNN and NBC Nightly News. Recently, he wrote and hosted the nationally televised, PBS-sponsored special "The Distracted Mind with Dr. Adam Gazzaley". Awards and honors for his research include the Pfizer/AFAR Innovations in Aging Award, the Ellison Foundation New Scholar Award in Aging, and the Harold Brenner Pepinsky Early Career Award in Neurobehavioral Science.
A fundamental challenge of modern society is the development of effective approaches to enhance brain function and cognition in both healthy and impaired individuals. For the healthy, this serves as a core mission of our educational system and for the cognitively impaired this is a critical goal of our medical system. Unfortunately, there are serious and growing concerns about the ability of either system to meet this challenge. I will describe an approach developed in our lab that uses custom-designed video games to achieve meaningful and sustainable cognitive enhancement (e.g., Anguera, et al. Nature 2013), as well the next stage of our research program, which uses video games integrated with technological innovations in software (e.g., brain computer interface algorithms, GPU computing) and hardware (e.g., virtual reality headsets, mobile EEG, transcranial electrical brain stimulation) to create a novel personalized closed loop system. I will share with you a vision of the future in which high-tech is used as an engine to enhance our brain's information processing systems, thus reducing our reliance on non-specific drugs to treat neurological and psychiatric conditions and allowing us to better target our educational efforts.
Session Level: All
Session Type: Keynote
Tags: Medical Imaging & Visualization; Video & Image Processing; Recommended for All Press