Learning new skills can make older people's brains three decades younger in just six weeks, according to a new study. Taking up three new tasks at the same time boosts mental power and protects against Alzheimer's disease, scientists have found. These skills may range from language lessons to using an iPad, photography, writing music or painting. Taking up three new skills, such as language lessons or learning how to use an iPad, at the same time can make older people's brains three decades younger in just six weeks (file photo) The course workload would be similar to an undergraduate's and adds to growing evidence that dementia is avoidable through lifestyle changes. After less than two months, those in their 80s increased their cognitive abilities to levels similar to those seen in someone in their 50s.
In a related editorial, R. Jeffrey Westcott, MD, and James E. Tcheng, MD, said Zack and colleagues' findings support the idea that machine learning could outperform classical statistical approaches to risk prediction--but it'll take some work to make it an industry standard. "Transforming healthcare, and, more specifically, transforming the management of data within healthcare to enable AI and its siblings, requires foundational investment and culture change," the editorialists wrote. They said artificial intelligence and machine learning will undoubtedly become "increasingly important in clinical medicine" as we move forward, with equity funding for healthcare-related AI ventures topping $2.4 billion in 2018. "Machine learning has proven to be valuable and is therefore the future," Westcott and Tcheng wrote. "Data warehouses and data lakes contain amazing amounts of structured and unstructured data that will change how medical research, drug and device trials, and device tracking are done. A collaborative effort is needed with EHR vendors, third-party vendors, professional societies and others to start meaningful standardized data collection and workflow redesign now."
QuantX recently became the first-ever computer-aided breast cancer diagnosis system cleared by the FDA for use in radiology, but it's not putting radiologists out of a job any time soon. "Radiology is the backbone of diagnosing many diseases today," said Jeffrey Aronin, chairman and CEO of Paragon Biosciences. "We believe the future is radiologists with technology." The combination of humans and machines apparently works really well. In a clinical study, QuantX helped radiologists interpret MRIs, noting the differences between cancerous and noncancerous breast lesions.
Elon Musk's Neuralink projects have been somewhat secretive since the company was first established. To that effect, all that's been known about the firm was that it was working on machine-brain interfaces. Well, the company has finally gone public with its first project and it turns out that it's an AI that can be inserted into a person's brain to allow them to connect to phones and computers. Machine/brain interface devices have been on the market in some form for over a decade, with people suffering from paralysis seeing many of the benefits of using these kinds of devices. For example, back in 2006, Matthew Nagle, who suffered from a spinal cord injury, was able to play Pong aided by the devices.
Williams Syndrome, a rare neurodevelopmental disorder that affects about 1 in 10,000 babies born in the United States, produces a range of symptoms including cognitive impairments, cardiovascular problems, and extreme friendliness, or hypersociability. In a study of mice, MIT neuroscientists have garnered new insight into the molecular mechanisms that underlie this hypersociability. They found that loss of one of the genes linked to Williams Syndrome leads to a thinning of the fatty layer that insulates neurons and helps them conduct electrical signals in the brain. The researchers also showed that they could reverse the symptoms by boosting production of this coating, known as myelin. This is significant, because while Williams Syndrome is rare, many other neurodevelopmental disorders and neurological conditions have been linked to myelination deficits, says Guoping Feng, the James W. and Patricia Poitras Professor of Neuroscience and a member of MIT's McGovern Institute for Brain Research.
Elon Musk recently gave a presentation on Neuralink, his newest venture designed to create computer-brain interfaces. Founded in 2017, the company is experimenting with a minimally invasive brain implant that utilizes "threads" to reduce the amount of damage done to surrounding brain tissue compared to current implanted devices. Musk spoke on the unnecessary size of most current implants, saying that a smaller chip could be used in their place. Providing patients with a smaller, less obstructive brain implant is exactly what Neuralink is aiming to do with their product. In the presentation, Musk also said he sees Neuralink potentially bridging the gap between the human brain and artificial intelligence as well.
Elon Musk doesn't think his newest endeavor, revealed Tuesday night after two years of relative secrecy, will end all human suffering. At a presentation at the California Academy of Sciences, hastily announced via Twitter and beginning a half hour late, Musk presented the first product from his company Neuralink. It's a tiny computer chip attached to ultrafine, electrode-studded wires, stitched into living brains by a clever robot. And depending on which part of the two-hour presentation you caught, it's either a state-of-the-art tool for understanding the brain, a clinical advance for people with neurological disorders, or the next step in human evolution. The chip is custom-built to receive and process the electrical action potentials--"spikes"--that signal activity in the interconnected neurons that make up the brain.
Elon Musk wants to link human brains with computers. The CEO of SpaceX and Tesla Motors is exploring just such a connection through another company he has launched, called Neuralink. Elon Musk has revealed that his stealth neurotechnology start-up is poised to begin human clinical trials soon on brain implants. Musk's Neuralink gave a presentation late Tuesday and released a white paper divulging details of its progress on implants that could eventually enable patients to overcome devastating injuries. The company, which has been pursuing the technology for years with Musk's financial backing and leadership, touted its initial results as promising for potentially treating conditions such as Alzheimer's, spinal injuries and blindness.
Neuralink, the Elon Musk-led startup that the multi-entrepreneur founded in 2017, is working on technology that's based around'threads' which it says can be implanted in human brains with much less potential impact to the surrounding brain tissue vs. what's currently used for today's brain-computer interfaces. "Most people don't realize, we can solve that with a chip," Musk said to kick off Neuralink's event, talking about some of the brain disorders and issues the company hopes to solve. Musk also said that long-term Neuralink really is about figuring out a way to "achieve a sort of symbiosis with artificial intelligence." "This is not a mandatory thing," he added. "This is something you can choose to have if you want."
Elon Musk has unveiled plans to implant computer chips in people's brains that the US billionaire says will treat brain diseases and enable superhuman intelligence. Neuralink, a secretive company set up by Mr Musk two years ago, has said it plans to begin tests of its "brain-computer interface" technology on humans in the next year. Mr Musk, 48, the chief executive of Tesla and SpaceX, said the technology will help "solve brain disorders of all kinds" and allow humans to merge with artificial intelligence. It has so far been tested on monkeys and rats, he said. The tiny chip, which measures 4x4mm, is connected to a thousand microscopic threads that enter the brain through four holes drilled in the skull.