Aspen Brain Lab
Brain Research
Aspen Brain Forum
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Aspen, CO 81612
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Accelerating Translational Neurotechnology



Sponsored by:
The Aspen Brain Forum Foundation
The New York Academy of Sciences
Science Translational Medicine

November 11 – 13, 2014
New York Academy of Sciences, New York City

Glenda Greenwald, President
Aspen Brain Forum Foundation

Joseph Dial, Chairman

Aspen Brain Forum Foundation Scientific Advisory Board

Registration is now Open

New York Academy of Sciences
Aspen Brain Forum Mission

think tank

Ed Boyden:
Speaking the Language of the Brain With Lig

Ed BoydenNow widely used in neuroscience research, optogenetics allows researchers to use light to control specific neurons in the living brain. In animal models of neuropsychiatric disorders such as Feng’s autistic mice, optogenetics can be used to perturb the neurons suspected to be involved, and to test ideas about how the disease might be treated.

To target the light more accurately within the brain, Ed Boyden "member of Aspen Brain Forum's Scientific Advisory Board" and MIT electrical engineer Clif Fonstad have  developed a 3-D array of waveguides, tiny light-conducting channels with mirrored ends that can deliver light pulses in complex patterns within a targeted brain region. In future they plan to incorporate recording electrodes into their devices and to use different colors that will allow multiple types of neurons to be controlled simultaneously. (We’re trying to speak the language of the brain with light,) says Boyden.


Public Lecture:
Emerging Technologies for Spinal Cord Injury

Amanda BoxtelSeptember 18, 5:00 p.m. – 7:30 p.m. 
Aspen Brain Forum 2013

Amanda Boxtel's life changed at the age of 24 after a skiing accident left her paralyzed from the waist down. However, Amanda has been able to stand and walk again, thanks to a new bionic exoskeleton technology — a wearable robot that helps to keep her body in a normal standing position and responds to her small movements to initiate walking. While current technologies have just begun to integrate man and machine, the future of spinal cord rehabilitation is also bright.

Using a combination of naturally-occurring neurochemicals and electrical stimulation, Grégoire Courtine is rehabilitating severed spinal cords in paralyzed rats, with treatments for human patients not far on the horizon.

Photo: Amanda Boxtel in her new exoskeleton

Neuro Research