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NIH BRAIN Funding for Neuroethics Research

The NIH BRAIN Initiative is now offering funding for neuroethics research in the form of administrative supplements to existing NIH BRAIN Initiative awards.

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Since these supplements are open specifically to investigators currently funded by an NIH BRAIN grant, BRAIN investigators and neuroethics researchers alike should know there is now a funded opportunity to collaborate. A full list of the NIH BRAIN Initiative funded awards is here: http://braininitiative.nih.gov/funding/fundedAwards.htm

Note that the supplement applications are due May 2, and should follow the instructions in PA-14-077 (http://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/pa-files/PA-14-077.html)

I believe we are seeing the tides shift with this unprecedented opportunity and hope there will be more formal funding mechanisms for neuroethics research in the future. If you’re not already aware, the NIH BRAIN Initiative has created a formal neuroethics workgroup (of which I’m honored to be a part along with NEW Leaders Nita Farahany and many talented others), so please keep an eye out for further neuroethics developments on that front.

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Best wishes and happy brainstorming,

Karen

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The freedom to become an addict: The ethical implications of addiction vaccines

*This post was originally featured on The Neuroethics Blog.
by Tabitha Moses

Tabitha Moses, M.S., is Administrative and Research Coordinator at Lehman College, CUNY, as well as a Research Affiliate at the National Core for Neuroethics at the University of British Columbia. Tabitha earned her BA in Cognitive Science and Philosophy and MS in Biotechnology from The Johns Hopkins University. She has conducted research in the areas of addiction, mental illness, and emerging neurotechnologies. She hopes to continue her education through a joint MD/PhD in Neuroscience while maintaining a focus on neuroethics.

The introduction of “addiction vaccines” has brought with it a belief that we have the potential to cure addicts before they have ever even tried a drug. Proponents of addiction vaccines hold that they will:
  1. prevent children from becoming addicted to drugs in the future,
  2. allow addicts to easily and safely stop using drugs, and
  3. potentially lower the social and economic costs of addiction for society at large.
However, it is critical to be aware of the limitations and risks – both ethical and physical – of introducing these vaccines into mainstream medical care.

Read the rest of this entry »

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*Editor’s note: This post was originally published on The Neuroethics Blog.

by Carolyn Plunkett

Carolyn Plunkett is a Ph.D. Candidate in the Philosophy Department at The Graduate Center of City University of New York. She is also an Ethics Fellow in The Bioethics Program at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, and a Research Associate in the Division of Medical Ethics at NYU Langone Medical Center. Carolyn will defend her dissertation in spring 2016, and, beginning July 2016, will be a Rudin Post-Doctoral Fellow in the Divisions of Medical Ethics and Medical Humanities at NYU Langone Medical Center. 

This post is part of a series that recaps and offers perspectives on the conversations and debates that took place at the recent 2015 International Neuroethics Society meeting.

 

Karen Rommelfanger, founding editor of The Neuroethics Blog, heard a talk I gave on deep brain stimulation (DBS) at Brain Matters! 3 in 2012. Three years later, she heard a brief synopsis of a paper I presented a few weeks ago at the International Neuroethics Society Annual Meeting. Afterward, she came up to me and said, “Wow! Your views have changed!” I had gone from being wary about using DBS in adults, much less minors, to defending its use in teens with anorexia nervosa. She asked me to write about this transition for this blog, and present my recent research.

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Meet-a-Member: Dr. Tomi Kushner

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Dear Friends:

I am a philosopher with a special interest in neuroethics. Until retirement, I served as Clinical Professor of Bioethics in the UCSF/Berkeley Joint Medical Program, teaching bioethics to medical students, other graduate students on the Berkeley campus, and supervising Masters and PhD theses in the School of Public Health. Described below are my current projects and I am happy to extend an invitation for you to join me.

Journals: As founding editor of the CQ, The Cambridge Quarterly of Healthcare Ethics, I’m proud to announce that 2016 marks the journal’s 25th anniversary. Of particular interest to you, will be CQ’s “Neuroethics Now” section that welcomes papers addressing the ethical application of neuroscience in research and patient care, as well as its impact on society. Read the rest of this entry »

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Join Us at International Neuroethics Society on Friday, Oct. 16, 2015 @ 7:30 pm.

JOIN US FOR FOOD AND DRINK* (each person will be responsible for his/her bill).
• Date: Friday, October 16
• Time: 7:30pm until?
• Location: Potter’s, lobby level of Palmer House Hotel, 17 East Monroe Street, Chicago, Illinois, 60603, Phone: 312.917.4933

*We will have small plates (in lieu of a sit down dinner) and drinks.
We will meet after the International Neuroethics Society poster reception. Potter’s is a 4 min walk from the INS Venue (Art Institute of Chicago).

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Tips for a Job Interview

Editor’s note: Laura successfully interviewed and will be starting a new position this fall. Congratulations, Laura!!

UnknownDr. Cabrera is a Postdoctoral Research Fellow at the National Core for Neuroethics where she has been conducting research to explore the attitudes of the general public toward enhancing interventions, as well as the normative implications of using neurotechnologies for non-medical purposes. She received a BSc in Electrical and Communication Engineering from the Instituto Tecnológico de Estudios Superiores de Monterrey (ITESM) in Mexico City, an MA in Applied Ethics from Linköping University in Sweden, and a PhD in Applied Ethics from Charles Sturt University in Australia. Her career goal is to pursue interdisciplinary neuroethics scholarship, provide active leadership, and train and mentor future leaders in the field.

Email: laura.cabrera@singularityu.org

By Dr. Laura Y. Cabrera

I recently went through a job interview for a faculty position and wanted to share with the NEW Leaders community some strategies that work for me in preparing for it. Read the rest of this entry »

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Hot off the presses! Ethical issues with direct-to-consumer neuroscience.

Ethical issues with Lumosity and other Direct-to-Consumer Brain Training
Games by NEW Leader, Dr. Karen Rommelfanger and her graduate student Ryan Purcell.

Article is open access here for the next 50 days until June 11, 2015.

“Internet brain training programs, where consumers serve as both subjects and funders of the research, represent the closest engagement many individuals have with neuroscience. Safeguards are needed to protect participants’ privacy and the evolving scientific enterprise of big data.”

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Join Us at International Neuroethics Society on Friday, Nov. 14, 2013 @ 7:30 pm.

JOIN US FOR FOOD* AND DRINKS at International Neuroethics Society (each person will be responsible for his/her bill).

  • Date: Friday, November 14
  • Time: 7:30pm until?
  • Location: Cure Bar and Bistro, 1000 H Street Washington, DC, CA 2001 (Grand Hyatt’s bar) Phone: (202) 582-1234

*We will have heavy appetizers (in lieu of a sit down dinner) and drinks.

We will meet after the International Neuroethics Society poster reception at Cure Bar and Bistro at the Grand Hyatt, which is a 4 min walk from the INS Venue (AAAS). See map below for directions from AAAS to the Cure Bar and Bistro.

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Please RSVP to Karen Rommelfanger (krommel@emory.edu) by Thurs, Oct 30th at 5pm EST.

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UPDATED LOCATION: Join Us at International Neuroethics Society on Friday, Nov. 8, 2013 @ 7 pm.

JOIN US FOR DINNER AND DRINKS (each person will be responsible for his/her bill).

  • Date: Friday, November 8
  • Time: 7pm until 830pm or until ?
  • UPDATED LOCATION: Marina Kitchen, 333 West Harbor Drive San Diego, CA 92101 (in the same hotel where INS is being held)

We will meet immediately after the International Neuroethics Society meeting on Friday 7pm at the Marina Kitchen‘s lounge area which located in the Marriott Marquis Marina (the same location as the INS venue) at 333 West Harbor Drive *each person will be responsible for his/her bill*

Please RSVP to Karen Rommelfanger (krommel@emory.edu) by Fri, November 1 at 5pm EST.

 

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Meet a Member: Dr. Syd Johnson

UnknownDr. Syd Johnson is a neuroethicist/bioethicist/philosopher at Michigan Technological University, where she teaches ethics and bioethics, and singlehandedly holds down the neuroethics fort in the snowy wilderness of northern Michigan. Prior to her appointment at Tech, she was a Research Fellow in Neuroethics at Dalhousie University in Halifax, Nova Scotia, and received her PhD in philosophy from SUNY Albany. Her research interests are primarily in the ethical implications of brain injuries, especially those at opposite ends of the severity spectrum: mild TBI, specifically sport-related concussion, and disorders of consciousness. Syd has been a vocal advocate for radical, neuroprotective reforms in youth sports such as football and hockey, and thinks one of the important roles of bioethicists is to stir up debate about health-related issues of importance to the public. To that end, and despite her training as a philosopher, her interests in neuroethics tend towards real-world problems and concerns rather than metaphysical speculation. On the other hand, Syd really likes to think about zombies, and the ethical and metaphysical implications of the impending zombie apocalypse. Read the rest of this entry »

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