We are pleased to announce the rtFIN 2019 keynote speakers:
- Heidi Johansen-Berg (University of Oxford)
- Stephen M. LaConte (Virginia Tech Carilion)
- Steven Laureys (University of Liège)
- Klaas Enno Stephan (University of Zurich & ETH Zurich)
- Kymberly Young (University of Pittsburgh)
Neurofeedback and neuroplasticity: implications for rehabilitation
Neurofeedback provides a tool for targeted modulation of brain activity. This talk will discuss applications of real time fMRI neurofeedback to drive plasticity in the human sensorimotor system. This approach can be used to ask questions about the scope for rapid structural plasticity in the healthy brain: Feedback in healthy volunteers effectively modulates the balance of activity between the two motor cortices and this results in structural changes in callosal white matter fibres. The approach can also be used in a therapeutic context: fMRI evidence in stroke patients provides rationale for feedback interventions that can be used to alter laterality of activity.
Directly testing the roles of resting-state networks with real-time fMRI
Spontaneous “resting-state” neural activity was initially thought to be noise, but the spatially distributed coherence patterns of these fluctuations produce known, reproducible networks. However, the functional roles of these networks are not known. In this brief talk, I will outline methods for real-time fMRI that my lab has developed to move beyond correlational studies try to directly examine the functional roles of these networks. In addition, I will show preliminary data from depression, attention deficit, and TBI participants that indicate that real-time fMRI might be able to characterize and ultimately help rehabilitate neurological and psychiatric illness.
(Klaas Enno Stephan)
Translational Neuromodeling, Computational Psychiatry and Computational Psychosomatics
For many brain diseases, particularly in psychiatry, we lack clinical tests for differential diagnosis and cannot predict optimal treatment for individual patients. This presentation outlines a translational neuromodeling framework for inferring subject-specific mechanisms of brain disease from non-invasive measures of behavior and neuronal activity. Guided by clinical theories of maladaptive cognition and aberrant brain-body interactions, generative models can be developed that have potential as “computational assays”. Evaluating the clinical utility of these assays requires prospective patient studies that address concrete clinical problems, such as treatment response prediction. If successful, computational assays may help provide a formal basis for differential diagnosis and treatment predictions in individual patients and, ultimately, facilitate the construction of mechanistically interpretable disease classifications.
Critical Issues when Designing Randomized Clinical Trials for Neurofeedback Interventions
The development of fMRI neurofeedback has resulted in dramatic advances in clinical interventions that target many different forms of neuropsychiatric illness. Many issues need to be addressed when considering a neurofeedback clinical trial design. These include the standardization and registration of protocols, choice of target, feedback modality/display and control condition, randomization and blinding, as well as long-term sustainability of effects and achievable power. This lecture will focus on these ongoing research challenges, as well as provide guidance for researchers in the practical implementation and design of fMRI neurofeedback clinical trial designs. Ethical considerations will also be discussed.
Can science explain consciousness? Lessons from coma and related states
Understanding consciousness remains one of the greatest mysteries for science to solve. How do our brains work? Will we ever be able to read minds? How can we know if some patients in coma have any consciousness left and how could we communicate with them? What are near-death experiences? What is brain death? What happens in our brains during dreaming, hypnosis or meditation? At present, nobody understands how matter (our trillions of neural connections) becomes perception and thought.
The lecture will review some neurological facts on consciousness and impaired consciousness. While philosophers have pondered upon the mind-brain conundrum for millennia, scientists have only recently been able to explore the connection analytically through measurements and perturbations of the brain’s activity. This ability stems from recent advances in technology and especially from emerging functional neuroimaging and electrophysiology studies. The mapping of conscious perception and cognition in health (e.g., conscious waking, sleep, dreaming, hypnosis, meditation, trance, sleepwalking and anesthesia) and in disease (e.g., brain death, coma, near-death, “vegetative” unresponsive wakefulness, minimally conscious state, locked-in syndrome, seizures, hallucinations etc.) is providing exiting new insights into the functional neuroanatomy of human consciousness. Our perception of the outside world (sensory awareness; what we see, hear, etc.) and our awareness of an inner world (self-awareness; the little "voice" inside that "speaks" to ourselves) seemingly depend on two separate "awareness" networks.
RT-FIN International ConferenceRegistration website for RT-FIN International Conference
RT-FIN International ConferenceRT-FIN International Conference0.00EUROnlineOnly2019-01-01T00:00:00Z
Teaching & Training, CT2, RWTH Aachen, Medical FacultyTeaching & Training, CT2, RWTH Aachen, Medical FacultyForckenbeckstrasse 71 52704 Aachen Germany