Tonic and Phasic Alertness Training For Cognitive Decline in Aging

Award Information
Agency: Department of Health and Human Services
Branch: N/A
Contract: 1R43AG039965-01
Agency Tracking Number: R43AG039965
Amount: $686,014.00
Phase: Phase I
Program: SBIR
Awards Year: 2011
Solicitation Year: 2011
Solicitation Topic Code: NIA
Solicitation Number: PA08-071
Small Business Information
625 Market St., Ste 610, SAN FRANCISCO, CA, -
DUNS: 831447730
HUBZone Owned: N
Woman Owned: N
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: N
Principal Investigator
 (925) 580-2806
Business Contact
Phone: (925) 580-2806
Research Institution
DESCRIPTION (provided by applicant): The primary objective of this Phase I application is to develop and deploy a novel, neuroplasticity- based, computerized training program that has been shown to drive positive changes in attention, working memory and executive function in a vulnerable aging population. The training approach is based on the scientific principles of brain plasticity, implemented successfully in the past with measurable improvements in cognitive function following intensive training inthe elderly (1,26,47). The current approach is fundamentally novel in that it addresses the attentional state of the individual, promoting an optimal level of alertness that can then be applied to higher- order, cognitive abilities. Our data suggests thatthis approach may enable greater benefits from cognitive training and further generalization to untrained, resource demanding attention, working memory and executive tasks. Given the ease of access to the training regimen and its scalability (web deliverable), this form of therapy could benefit several million individuals, 65-years of age and older whose lives are limited by progressive, age-related cognitive and physical decline. PUBLIC HEALTH RELEVANCE: This project represents the translation of an effective attention training therapy, originally conceived within the academic research sector, to the marketplace via collaboration between the original developers and Brain Plasticity, Inc. This application aims to develop and behaviorally evaluatethe benefits of a novel, neuroplasticity-based, computerized and web-deliverable training program suite that has been shown to drive substantial improvements in cognition. These outcomes are widely applicable to the cognitive health and life-quality of several million elderly Americans, and have further potential to offset degenerative processes common to normal aging.

* Information listed above is at the time of submission. *

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