SAN2016 Blog

Mathematical Anxiety influences the cortical connectivity profiles in lower alpha band during working memory tasks

Dr Klados kicked of his presentation by presenting the concept of math anxiety which corrupts working memory resources for cognitive tasks. His EEG study explores the way the interaction of groups (high math anxious, low math anxious) and working memory task difficulty affect the connectivity profiles for brain regions. It was highlighted that math anxiety level can have a strong effect on the connectivity pattern of brain regions responsible for WM task performance.

Human Connectome as a big-data problem: New approaches for analysis and visualization

Dr Manousos Klados presented a talk focusing on the problems and solutions that accompany human connectome data. Dr Klados gave a short introduction on graph theory and spectral graph theory and presented the use of Minimum Spanning Tree (MST) methodology, and diffusion mapping for performing data reduction while overcoming the loss of information.

Exploring the Efficacy of Biofeedback Training in Smoking Addiction: A SFB Pilot Study

Niki Pandria kicked of the talk with a brief discourse about what is neurofeedback. Linking that to smoking craving as a brain function modification. A host of neurofeedback approaches regarding smoking cessation is presented through a thorough literature review.

The SFB study takes cues from these studies and includes a clinical evaluation, a neurophysiological evaluation, a waiting period, a biofeedback/neurofeedback intervention group and then the assessment.

Neurofeedback The Cinderella of medicine

Professor Ioannides kicked of this talk with a critique on neurofeedback. Mechanisms, impact and efficacy are discussed as open for research in this era of neurofeedback revolution. Most of the studies that do double blind studies present diminished results. The proposition is that maybe the way to explore and classify results may be erroneous.

Reasons include:

Between subjects variations are very difficult to lock down.

Of Mice and Men; Neurobehavioral and toxicological effects of e-cigarettes exposure of mice and Men

The talk kicks off with impressively worrying data for the impact of cigarettes epidemiologically as well as in a more personal level. E-cigarettes are the most prevalent cessation method of choice for smokers. After a mention of the established pros and cons of e-cigarettes relating to their potential toxicity the methodology for in vitro and in vivo studies is outlined.

Coupling Neuroscience Smoking Cessation Interventions with Social Media and Mobile Devices

Francisco J Nuñez Benjumea introduced the broad and multidisciplinary nature of the project spanning 12 international partners an 5 different interventions. Interventions are as diverse as Public Service Announcements, E-cigarette impact measurements, Neurofeedback, Sleep studies and the focus of his talk Social Local Mobile (SoLoMo) interventions.

Introducing the SmokeFreeBrain Symposium .

Kicking off the Smokfree Brain symposium, professor Bamidis, the project coordinator summarized its core points. The project is about assessing and creating a holistic approach for smoking cessation. E-cigarettes, neurofeedback, public service announcements, SoLoMo interventions and sleep studies are included in the project and are be presented in this symposium. Economical aspects and policy making considerations also form the core of this endeavor and are included in the project’s consideration. 

Bio-Neuroscientific Approaches of life in space and extreme environments (Part A)

Dr. Chrysoula Kourtidou-Papadeli gave a fantastic lecture explaining the human physiology during spaceflight and sleep in microgravity. She reported historical aspects of human space explorations and reported the methodological, technological and physiological parameters involved in long-term space-flights such as the Mars exploration.

Bio-Neuroscientific Approaches of life in space and extreme environments (Part A)

Dr. Ivana Rosenzweig gave a fascinating presentation explaining the importance of sleep across species and how it affects physiological and brain functioning. She also explained the correlates of human sleep stages in Default Mode Network activations and sleep neuroimaging. She provided significant insight into the role of sleep on cognition and well-being under condition of long-term space flight.

Bio-Neuroscientific Approaches of life in space and extreme environments (Part B)

Dr. Chrysoula Kourtidou-Papadeli presented the results of the Greek experiment regarding the arterial stifness data during the RSL bed-rest study with 6o head-down tilt.The study was performed in ENVIHAB building in the premises of European Space Agency (ESA) in Cologne, Germany. Both heart rate and arterial-stifness seem to be affected by the loss of gravity, while the RSL countermeasure has its impact on these parameters. Compensatory mechanisms also exist.