Families are central to understanding the role genetics plays in neurodegenerative disease. The Brain Study follows the Framingham Heart Study model in enrolling multiple generations to study how genetics impacts the effect of lifestyle on the disease.
What is Neuroscience?
  • Neuroscience is brain science.
  • Specifically, it is the scientific study of the nervous system.
  • Neuroscientists analyze the biological and chemical processes of the brain and broader nervous system functions.

Neuroscience Challenges include Degenerative Brain Disorders, also known as Neurodegenerative Diseases. These include:
  • Alzheimer’s Disease
  • Parkinson’s Disease
  • Frontotemporal Disorders
  • ALS, commonly known as Lou Gehrig’s Disease
  • Multiple Sclerosis
  • Traumatic Brain Injury

Who gets these diseases? How to avoid them?
  • If only scientists knew the answer to these questions.
  • Why does one sibling get it and another not?
  • Current data support a healthy lifestyle throughout life as a primary deterrent
  • It all seems so random—and yet so utterly and painfully destructive.
  • There is a higher incidence of disease in different ethnic groups and underserved populations.

What can WE do?
  • This is precisely why we established the Georgetown Neurosciences Foundation—we want to provide physicians the tools to help them find answers and better treatments.
  • What tools are we talking about?  Many new tools to find the disease early will aid greatly in future management of the disease.
  • These tools will come from a longitudinal multi-generational study—modeled after the successful cardiac health study (The Framingham Heart Study) which has had dramatic results on heart health. The Framingham Study is still ongoing—and has enrolled four generations of participants.
  • The Georgetown Brain Study is modeled for multiple generations that are available presently in the central Texas area.  In this study participants will passively provide health data through smart and wearable devices to self-monitor and anonymously report via a compliant, secure web-based portal to a local and global data base.

More About the Framingham Heart Study
  • This study is a multi-generational research collaboration between the National Institutes of Health, Harvard University, and the people of Framingham, MA.
  • 5,000 Framingham residents signed up originally.
  • Over the last 70 years, this study revolutionized the understanding and treatment of cardiovascular disease by observing human volunteers over generations.
  • This study is now in its fourth generation.

We hope to have the same impact with the Georgetown Brain Health.

The Georgetown Brain Study
  • The primary reason we established the Georgetown Neurosciences Foundation was to provide operational support for the Georgetown Brain Study (GBS)
  • The GBS is currently enrolling multiple generations in a long term study through a web-based portal with the capacity to engage and collect data on a large cohort.  
  • The GBS has complete clinical studies and currently enrolling study subjects in 4 different studies focused on the use of smart devices to report the state of ones cognition and mood.
  • Volunteers to participate —we hope that you, your family, and your friends will enroll —sign in to our secure website.  You can participate to the extent you want.  Some join for the educational programs with other are actively engaged in studies to self-report information on simple lifestyle questions, cognition, and mood.
  • You will gain ongoing feedback and continuing education on your brain health. The data is what is useful to scientists—not your identity.  All information that is collected is deidentified.
  • What type of questions will you answer? Standard demographics like age/gender and then lifestyle-related questions: what your diet generally consists of; if and how much you exercise; what conditions you are currently being treated for; what medications you are on; what you are allergic to. The cognition and mood tests take is set intervals of 4 to 6 months will be short and you will finish everything in 20-30 minutes. If necessary, volunteers will be available to help you.

What Research Tells Us
  • Intervention is most effective when an integrated approach to treatment happens early in a disease’s progression.
  • This study will provide support for the best treatments and its timing.
  • This study will give participants constant access to the most current education and advances in the neurosciences
  • Longitudinal studies like this one that follow generations of people over time have successfullyidentified what risk factors cause disease, and what treatments work.
  • This study will start with multiple-generations and use advanced technologies to better identify disease progression and intervention.

Will I Really Make a Difference?
  • Absolutely. Scientists studying Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, ALS, Frontotemporal Disorders, and, Traumatic Brain Injury need all of us to create a robust database to help them understand who might get these diseases and what treatments might be effective for whom.  Our data will be aggregated with other studies form all over the world.

Why Georgetown, Texas?
  • Georgetown is the perfect place to launch both our Neurosciences Foundation and its Georgetown Brain Health Study. I say “our” because the Foundation is a non-profit (501-C3) and is managed  by Georgetown community leaders.
  • The City of Georgetown is a retirement destination with many retirees here to be close to their children and grandchildren who are brought here by the growing workforce demands in the technology industry.
  • Sun City is just one example of a local age-restricted community that caters to the 55+ age group. Surrounding communities will extend the diversity of our subject volunteer population

There is so much science around these issues. Are we working with any other organizations? Yes! We have already engaged with:
  • Dell Medical School, UT Austin
  • Mulva Institute for Neuroscience, Dell Medical School
  • UT Southwestern Medical Center for Depression Research and Clinical Care, Dallas
  • Peter O’Donnell Brain Institute, Dallas
  • John’s Hopkins School of Public Health
  • Numerous National Foundation and Associations
  • Pharmaceutical giants focused on neurodegenerative diseases.
  • A world wide network of other research and data centers to combine our work with for earlier and more precise answers.

How Can I Help Now?
  1. Please go to our website www.GeorgetownNeuroscienceFoundation.org and sign up to join the study then click on the SUPPORT link to make a secure tax-deductible contribution.
  2. Subscribe to receive updates.
  3. Tell your friends to join you—all of them, anywhere. The sooner we build our database—the sooner we can provide scientists the tool that they need to make progress treating these diseases.
  4. Participate in the Georgetown Brain Health Study by clicking on that link. Remember, all your personal (identifying) information stays private.  
  5. Volunteer in the foundation to support our efforts to recruit underserved populations into the foundation.  These population are at considerably higher risk of these neurological disorders.