Participation in a video game assesses mental decline and enhances mental performance as an alternative to drug therapy.

It’s called Neuroracer, a video game for elderly adults.  It can be used to assess mental performance (reaction time, attention) and memory and serve as therapy in lieu of drugs.  [Nature 2013]  Dr. Adam Gazzaley at University of California San Francisco is founding a whole new branch of medicine that improves brain performance without drugs. [YouTube.com] Brain performance of 80-year olds can be reversed to peak performance at age 20 with 12 hours of participation in a month.  Drugs can’t do that.

Dr. Gazzaley, working in his Neuroscape Lab, is involved in innovative research to improve brain performance. Rewiring the brain via video game training is novel, in its infancy, but produces real measured improvements without side effects. [New York Times Sept 4, 2013] Neuroracer is a research tool, not an available consumer product.  It has a promising future.

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