At the second annual Aging Research and Technology Summit held at UC Berkeley in the fall of 2019, hundreds of leading researchers, academics, technologists, caregivers and older adult advocates gathered to present their efforts to confront the crisis of dementia and other brain disorders. The theme “Disrupting Neurodegenerative Diseases.”

Hosted by OLLI and several other UC Berkeley campus partners, it showcased emerging findings and novel innovations as well as fostered a robust cross-pollination of ideas and voices — interdisciplinary collaboration rarely seen at such conferences.

Thomas Insel, former director of the National Institute of Mental Health and co-founder and president of MindStrong Health, delivered the morning keynote. He focused on digital phenotyping, which uses data sets to learn about human feelings and behaviors. “For brain disorders, symptoms are the last things to happen. Digital technologies can provide insights for early interventions.” Randy Schekman, Nobel laureate and professor of Molecular and Cell Biology at UC Berkeley, spoke about fostering collaboration and resources to better understand the underlying causes of Parkinson’s disease. Listen to his presentation on Berkeley Talks.