Boosting Brain Health Through Innovation

What if your car was broken, but the mechanic never looked at the engine? According to Professor Olivier Oullier, President of EMOTIV, “the engine is the brain” and the mechanic is the scientist/physician/researcher. Despite the fact that the brain is arguably the most important organ in the human body, there are enormous gaps in our understanding of how it works. 

At the Goal 17 Partners space in Davos, Switzerland, a group of experts discussed finding effective, scalable, and acceptable ways to prevent and manage brain health, as well as overcome the many challenges facing the topic. 

The three panelists agreed that we must use innovative ways to solve mental health issues like depression and anxiety.

Professor Miranda Wolpert, Head of Mental Health Priority Area at Wellcome Trust and Professor at University College London, takes an expansive view. A year ago, the Wellcome Trust announced a new $200 million fund for a new type of innovative research into anxiety and depression among 16-24 year-olds. She believes “nothing is out of scope for us in terms of what can help us bring a rigorous review in terms of depression and anxiety.”  

George Vradenburg, founder and CEO of UsAgainstAlzheimers also expressed a collaborative spirit. Whether a person suffers from anxiety, depression, or psychiatric conditions like Alzheimer’s, “we have to work across a wide variety of governments and industry and researchers to basically understand how to stop it.” “There is a need for more multi-stakeholder coalitions.”

All three panelists said there was an urgent need to make progress on brain health before 2030. As Professor Miranda Wolpert said, “we have to do better.”