Dr. Bruce Wexler’s Travel Blog
Brazil and China: Two Countries Making a Difference in the Treatment of ADHD
My time spent researching neuroplasticity and cognitive function has opened the doors to a number of rewarding experiences, but my recent travels to Brazil and China will forever hold a special place in my heart. Wrapped up in our progress with American children, it’s easy to forget the intense global interest that surrounds ADHD and why our work with ACTIVATE™ is so important.
My trip to Brazil was an unqualified success, and I have to start by thanking Dr. Luis Rhode of the Medical University in Porto Alegre. Dr. Rhode is the President of the International Society of ADHD, and he was kind enough to ask me to help with a sophisticated evaluation of ACTIVATE™ for children with ADHD. I was honored to not only act as a consultant on research design at the University, but also to see ACTIVATE™ make its first inroads into South America.
The first study of ACTIVATE™ in the Portuguese language is now underway at Porto Alegre with a team of researchers being assigned to multiple facets of the study. The university made a point to call my visit “memorable,” but I can assure you that it is their work as world leaders in ADHD research that will echo throughout the field. The first phase of this exciting study has children using the ACTIVATE™ program several times a week at home, coming into the clinic once a week for an evaluation. At C8 Sciences, we have high hopes for the outcome of this study, and we have every reason to believe that ACTIVATE™ will cross language and cultural boundaries without missing a beat.
While in Brazil, it was my pleasure to speak publicly several times on cognitive brain training. I gave a well-received seminar to graduate students at the Medical University and spoke at two other universities in Rio de Janeiro and Sao Paulo before heading home.
Of course, Brazil isn’t the only country outside the U.S. putting our ACTIVATE™ system into action. I recently traveled to China to speak at Peking University on the subject of cognitive brain training. As many of you know, the physical education portion of the ACTIVATE™ system was designed in part by Peking University’s own Professor Jinxia Dong, so I couldn’t help but feel welcome.
Beijing Sports University was my next stop, where I geared my lecture towards the benefits of combining cognitive brain training with physical exercise and how the two work in synthesis. These lectures were standing room only affairs; people were sitting in stairways and halls to listen. For that, I can only give credit to the superb team of men and women who have helped C8 Sciences become a recognized leader in the field of ADHD therapy and research.
I was also pleased to meet with Professor Yan Yang, a former gymnastics champion who is currently working to refine the physical exercise aspects of ACTIVATE™. We’ve long insisted that the link between physical exercise and ADHD improvement is causal and compelling, and it’s gratifying to know we have a professor of Dr. Yang’s status helping us make ACTIVATE™ the best program it can be.
From there, it was off to Capital University to give a lecture on physical education and sports, again emphasizing the importance of cognitive brain training for children as well as adults. I also spoke on a matter that deserves more attention, which is the use of these therapies in improving the cognitive function of older adults.
Finally, it was my privilege to conduct a teacher training workshop at a Beijing elementary school. This workshop would have been remarkable either way, but it was made especially so by the attendance of Chinese President Xi Jinping. President Jinping was there to recognize the school for having one of the country’s leading physical education programs, and his presence attracted coverage from Chinese Central Television.
Speaking for myself and my colleagues, C8 Sciences is humbled and grateful to have support and interest from around the globe. Together with researchers from various parts of the world, I feel confident that we can continue to make a difference in the lives of children, adults, and seniors everywhere.