The 1990s “Decade of the Brain” is being Resuscitated

Hillary’s “Comprehensive Agenda for Mental Health” has just been launched with NIH Funding
Once again, the government is embarking on a massive exploratory venture in an effort to control the behavior of its citizens:

“During the course of the next decade, scientists will use advanced imaging, interviews, and behavioral testing to determine how childhood experiences interact with each other and with a child’s changing biology to affect brain development and — ultimately — social, behavioral, academic, health and other outcomes.”

“Understanding these relationships may help reveal the biological and environmental building blocks that best contribute to successful and resilient young adults. This enhanced knowledge also may lead to ways to predict potential developmental problems so that they can be prevented or reversed… [This] groundbreaking research [ ] promises to inform future educational strategies, child development innovations, research priorities, more effective public health interventions, and science-based policy decisions.”

According to Hillary Clinton’s deplorable Factsheet on the mental health status of the American people:

hillary_mental-health“Nearly a fifth of all adults in the United States, more than 40 million people, are coping with a mental health problem.[1] Close to 14 million people live with a serious mental illness such as schizophrenia or bipolar disorder.[2] Moreover, many of these individuals have additional complicating life circumstances, such as drug or alcohol addiction, homelessness, or involvement with the criminal justice system.[3] Veterans are in acute need of mental health care, with close to 20% of those returning from the Iraq and Afghanistan wars experiencing post-traumatic stress or depression.[4] And the problem is not limited to adults: an estimated 17 million children in the United States experience mental health problems,[5] as do one in four college students.[6]” (August 29, 2016)

As some of you may recall, in 1991, the National Institute of Mental Health initiated the “Decade of the Brain.” Neuroscientists from the NIMH “sold” the “Decade of the Brain” to Congress with presentations of MRI technicolor pictures of the brain. Eventually, those pictures proved to be meaningless.

Indeed, the Decade of the Brain did absolutely nothing to improve the mental health of those who suffer from a mental disability. But it did prove to be extraordinarily lucrative for academic institutions who garnered millions in government grants; for the pharmaceutical industry whose psychotropic drugs became “Blockbuster” money makers; and for the psychiatric profession whose leadership were beneficiaries of both industry largess and government funds.

Currently, functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) is touted as the best tool that neuroscientists have to measure brain activity. However, the most advanced currently used software to interpret fMRI images has recently been scientifically demonstrated to be unreliable. The rate of identifying false-positives is estimated at up to 70%. This means that the “gold standard” of brain imaging techniques is unreliable in correctly “detecting” brain activities or correctly interpreting brain functions.

“because functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) is one of the best tools we have to measure brain activity, and if it’s flawed, it means all those conclusions about what our brains look like during things like exercise, gaming, love, and drug addiction are wrong.”  (Read more here and “A Bug in fMRI Software Could Invalidate 15 Years of Brain Research,” Science Alert, July 2016)

The absence of a scientific base continues to undermine ALL of the diagnostic and treatment claims and projections of the powerful mental health lobby. This lack of a sound scientific base led psychiatry’s dominant leadership to serve as industry’s promotional handmaidens.

Recruitment of 10,000 children begins for a government study of adolescent brain development:

francis_collins.jpg

Dr. Francis Collins NIH Director

NIH News Release: Sept 13, 2016
More than 10,000 children – ages 9-10 through adolescence– will be recruited for a study of brain, social, emotional, and cognitive development. They will be recruited at public and private schools across the country – as well as through twin registries.

“Adolescence is a time of extraordinary physical, emotional, and intellectual growth as well as a changing social environment full of new challenges and opportunities that help shape a young person’s adult identity, health and well-being. There is much to learn about how varied adolescent experiences (e.g., participation in extracurricular activities; playing video games; sleep habits; head injuries from sports; experimentation with alcohol, tobacco, marijuana or other substances), affect development and vice-versa. This is particularly true in our rapidly changing world, which is now dominated by social media and other forms of communication in which adolescents readily engage.”

“We know the brain is still developing well into the mid-20s, making it vulnerable to a host of influences,” said NIH Director Francis S. Collins, M.D., Ph.D. “With several NIH institutes and centers working together on this important study, we will be able to learn how a variety of biological events and environmental exposures affect brain development, giving us greater insight into what helps adolescents traverse that potentially tumultuous time to become healthy and productive adults.”

abcd-adolescent-brain-researchDuring the course of the next decade, scientists will use advanced brain imaging, interviews, and behavioral testing to determine how childhood experiences interact with each other and with a child’s changing biology to affect brain development and — ultimately — social, behavioral, academic, health and other outcomes.

Understanding these relationships may help reveal the biological and environmental building blocks that best contribute to successful and resilient young adults. This enhanced knowledge also may lead to ways to predict potential developmental problems so that they can be prevented or reversed. Families that volunteer will be part of groundbreaking research that promises to inform future educational strategies, child development innovations, research priorities, more effective public health interventions, and science-based policy decisions.

The ABCD Coordinating Center (link is external) is housed at the University of California, San Diego and recruitment will be conducted through schools at 19 study sites (link is external) across the country. For more information about this landmark study, please visit its website at www.ABCDStudy.org (link is external).

The ABCD study is supported by the National Institute on Drug Abuse, the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, the National Cancer Institute, the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development, the National Institute of Mental Health, the National Institute on Minority Health and Health Disparities, the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke, the NIH Office of Behavioral and Social Sciences Research, and the Division of Adolescent and School Health at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.