I’m currently in heavy neuroscience mode. Here’s one example: the unveiling of the BRAIN Initiative, an NIH/NSF/DARPA/private research initiative announced by President Obama in April. It focuses on new technologies to map brain connectivity and function. Whether there will be new money isn’t clear, but it does highlight some very exciting areas in modern neuroscience.
Dig beneath the public rollout, and there’s a roster of scientific advisors that provides a clue as to where it’s headed. Listed are some of the best leaders and technology developers in understanding circuit-level brain function. It’s a promising start. I predict that next we’ll see new Requests for Applications (RFAs) issued by NIH and NSF. That would be a prosaic route, but without a single central goal…let a hundred flowers bloom!
Finally…here I am on Melissa Harris-Perry’s program to talk about the BRAIN Initiative. NBC has split it into Part 1 (BRAIN Initiative), Part 2 (implications for Alzheimer’s), and Part 3 (what brain scans do — and don’t — reveal in individuals). Watch me spar with the pundits.