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Neurogenesis, Neuroplasticity, and the Treatment of Brain Disorder
AdvisorHutsler, Jeffrey J.
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Brain disorders affect 2.4 billion individuals around the world (Worldometers, 2013).Many brain disorders such as stroke, Alzheimer’s, and Parkinson’s disease arecharacterized by the loss of functioning neurons (National Institute on Aging, 2014). Theability to generate new neurons (neurogenesis) represents a potential opportunity tocreate effective, targeted treatment for these patients. Until the 1960s it was not believedthat neurogenesis could occur in the adult brain (Reynolds & Weiss, 1992). Since thattime a multitude of research has been done regarding the causes of neurogenesis andneuroplasticity, but very little in the way of effective treatments for adult humans haveresulted (Hannan, 2014). Current research into potential neurogenesis related treatmentshas focused primarily on the creation of drugs, but other options may be feasible forimplementation now. Extensive literature review and interviews with practicingneurologists allow for the proposition of potentially effective neurogenesis relevanttreatments for brain disorders, namely enriched environment and restricted diet.