Your Weekly Dose of #5ThoughtsFriday: A description of what we think is important at BIAMD
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Here are the 5 things we thought were
worth sharing with you this week:
They ended up with 4.3 million players, setting the stage for what they call "the largest dementia study in history."
Just a few minutes of playing a certain video game could help identify the earliest stages of Alzheimer's in ways existing medical tests can't, researchers have found.
A new study used a smartphone app called  Sea Hero Quest  to monitor how gamers with and without a genetic predisposition to Alzheimer's navigate the virtual world, using their thumbs to move a little boat through a series of maritime mazes.

This type of test was key because "spatial navigation is emerging as a critical factor in identifying preclinical Alzheimer's disease," authors of the study, just published in the  Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences , said.
Players with a high genetic risk for Alzheimer's took less efficient routes to reach checkpoints in the game, researchers found. What's more, the movement patterns were identified among players in the genetic risk pool who had not yet displayed any other memory problems, they said.

By casting an online global net for survey subjects, scientists also managed to reach their conclusions in what might be described as warp speed. They marked the equivalent of five hours' worth of lab research for every two minutes of game play, they said, because vast sums of data about each player are available in every second of play.
The findings offer wide-ranging possibilities, including aiding "the development of more personalized measures for future diagnostics and drug treatment programs," researcher Gillian Coughlan said.

Researchers set out to test the spatial navigation hypothesis in a novel way: They created Sea Hero Quest and engaged casual gamers around the globe.

Making their scientific purposes clear up front, developers focused on Apple and Android users in the United Kingdom, letting them decide whether to allow researchers to collect data about how they maneuvered through the game's virtual world. They ended up with 4.3 million players, setting the stage for what they call "the largest dementia study in history."

Scientists then homed in on data from more than 27,000 players between ages 50 and 75 -- the group at highest risk of developing Alzheimer's symptoms within a decade -- to create a global benchmark for how most people navigate the game, the study states.

CLICK HERE to see more about the gamification of research.
Congratulations to our former Board Member and dear friend, Jean Wilson, RN, Assistant Professor of Nursing at Stevenson University. Jean was awarded the National Institution Faculty/Staff National Association of College and University Residence Halls (NACHRH) award for the month of March through the National Residence Hall Honorary (NRHH).

The honor bestowed upon individuals who have provided outstanding leadership and service.

She was the first national winner in 12 years out of 4,419 submissions.

Way to go, Jean!
From those of us who grew up in the 70s and before, there is a deep, deep well of fond and funny stories of the cars we drove when we were young. Before the sleek and long-lasting materials of today, most of us cut our teeth driving vehicles that generated stories we never tire of telling.

Everything rusted. For those of us who suffered northern winters, we were usually pulling out the Bondo in Spring to try and patch the rusting ridges around wheel wells and fenders. Heavy muffler exhaust pipes rusted and the holes would make our cars too loud to sneak home after curfew.

One of the most exciting aspects of owning a car those decades ago was the installing of a car stereo. Back then cars arrived with factory-installed AM radios and, as kids, we couldn’t wait to buy that awesome 8-track and, later, cassette-playing stereo. It was a great badge of honor to proudly wear for those of us who became savvy enough to install our own stereo.
My one brother had a car from the 70s whose color was a pale peach. We called her the Peach Bomb and it took two people to start her (one to stick a pencil in the choke). My other brother drove a late-sixties rag-top, Electra 225, that poured rain onto the passenger whenever he turned a corner.

One of my earliest cars was gifted to me when it was already 17 years old but had only 11 thousand miles on her. Because she was barely driven all those years, the bottom had all but rusted away and, on the passenger’s side, all that stood between my passenger and the pavement was a floor mat. When I’d drive in the winter with someone in the passenger’s seat, the snow and ice would fling up and fly up and spray them in the face. It would swirl in the car like it was a blizzard-inside. LOL.

CLICK HERE to see how Kara Swanson wraps this up.
For those new to Kristen's blog, you can read more about her story HERE . It has been 3.5 years since she sustained a traumatic brain injury in a bike crash, and she is now
finally back on the bike.
Recently, I had someone ask why, after everything, I have been through, would I take the risk of getting back on the bike. Why wouldn’t I simply be content with running and leave it at that? Why put me at risk of another crash, another brain injury, which could be even worse? The question came from a place of concern, and while difficult to answer, I’m going to make an attempt.

In the simplest form, the answer is two-fold. The first being – there are many ways to sustain a brain injury, and riding a bike is far from the most common. The second part – I enjoy riding. While these answers are basically what I shared with the person that asked, there really is a lot more behind my “why”.

Back in 2010, I purchased a road bike a few months before our wedding. Josh was a cyclist when we met, and the rides he did sounded long, difficult, and fun. As I gained fitness and confidence with my new hobby, we had a blast logging the miles together. Two weeks before our wedding, we rode the Triple Bypass, a 120-mile ride with 10,000 feet of climbing over three mountain passes. For years after that, we spent long days exploring new areas by two wheels and taking incredible cycling vacations. I loved the sense of accomplishment after reaching the summit of a big mountain pass, and then flying down the other side, reaching speeds of 30, 40, and even 50 mph. Whether it was simply exploring new routes close to home, or freezing our butts off coming down steep European mountain passes in the rain, we have shared thousands of miles together. The time we have spent playing on two wheels has formed some of our fondest memories, and I want to be able to build more of those memories together. I honestly don’t know if I will ever be able to ride the way I used to, but I do know it won’t happen unless I put some work towards that goal.

CLICK HERE to read the rest of Kristin's comeback story.
What We are Reading We Think
You Might FInd Interesting
Bart Goldstein was only sixteen when he suffered a traumatic brain injury (TBI) in a car accident in 2001.  No Stone Unturned  is the saga of Bart’s struggle to regain his life. Told from his father’s point of view, the book chronicles the family’s ordeal, and flashbacks fill in Bart’s life since he arrived from Korea at the age of five months.
Considering every possibility in their search for remedies to Bart’s catastrophic injuries, the Goldsteins explored several promising alternatives, including craniosacral, hyperbaric oxygen, sensory learning, and vision restoration therapies. Bart’s remarkable recovery resulted from a combination of conventional medicine and alternative and emerging therapies.
TBI has now become the “signature injury” for thousands of wounded warriors returning from Iraq and Afghanistan; this timely book offers profound insights into what survivors and their families must face. Anyone struggling with this “invisible” disability will find the book insightful, inspiring, and useful.

CLICK HERE for more.
5) Quote We Are Contemplating...

"Every flower must grow through dirt.”
  • Laurie Jean Sennott

Have you ever clicked on the beautiful pictures posted at the end of every #5ThoughtsFridays? Try it. You might learn something fun!
Stay Safe. Enjoy Spring.

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  Thanks for reading! Have a wonderful weekend.