February 9, 2016 By danablog505 in Behavior, Dana publications, Emotions, From the Archives, Journals - Cerebrum Tags: brains do it: lust attraction and attachment, Brenda Patoine, emotions, Feeling our way: the challenge of studying emotion and the brain, From the Archives, Helen Fisher, Kathlyn Stone, Kayt Sukel, love, Neurobiology Affects Love and Attraction, neuroscience, The Brian Signature of Love, The Chemistry of Love, Valentine’s Day
When we published the Cerebrum article, “The Brain Games Conundrum: Does Cognitive Function Really Sharpen the Mind?”, and a follow-up Q&A with the authors in November 2014, three aspects of the article were crystal clear: I) Few topics in neuroscience evoke as much debate as brain game effectiveness. 2) Advertising has convinced tens of thousands of people to open their wallets and buy products. 3) The science surrounding the benefits of brain games is sketchy at best.
The article was in direct contrast to website claims by Lumosity, a major player in the brain-game business, with more than $1 billion a year in revenues and 60-million members. At the time, Lumosity’s website boasted of nine peer-reviewed studies, 36 university collaborators, and testimonials galore.
Now, according to the Federal Trade Commission (FTA):
The creators and marketers of the Lumosity ‘brain training’ program have agreed to settle FTA charges alleging that they deceived consumers with unfounded claims that Lumosity games can help users perform better at work and in school, and reduce or delay cognitive impairment associated with age and other serious health conditions.
As part of the settlement, Lumos Labs, the company behind Lumosity, will pay $2 million in redress and will notify subscribers of the FTC action and provide them with an easy way to cancel their auto-renewal to avoid future billing.
Economist Ivar Hagendoorn’s fascination with dance led to a decade of neuroscience research, described in his 2003 essay in our Cerebrum journal. In “The Dancing Brain” he argues that while it is the limbs that move, it is the brain that is dancing:
Reading and thinking for several years about what we ﬁnd interesting when we watch someone dance brought me no closer to understanding what I saw on stage. At some point it struck me that this was the wrong track. Everything we see, hear, feel and do is mediated by the brain. To understand what fascinated and literally moved me in watching dance, we have to look to the brain.
When she was 43, journalist and former nurse Cleo Hutton had a severe stroke. Suddenly unable to speak, understand, or even walk, Hutton struggled first to survive and then to regain her physical skills and her independence. Her book Striking Back at Stroke: A Doctor-Patient Journal combines entries from her personal journal with medical and scientific commentary by Louis R. Caplan, an expert in US stroke medicine and a member of the Dana Alliance for Brain Initiatives. Dana Press published the book in 2003 (11 years after her stroke), and we ran an excerpt of it in our Cerebrum journal, “The War of Rehabilitation.” Here’s a bit from Hutton’s journal: