Stanford professor Dr. Shelli Kesler and colleagues recently published a study in the journal Brain Injury demonstrating improvements in cognition following Lumosity training in childhood cancer survivors.
Twenty-three pediatric cancer survivors completed 40 sessions of Lumosity training. Participants showed significantly increased processing speed, cognitive flexibility, and memory recall. In addition, brain imaging results showed increased activity in the pre-frontal cortex compared to baseline.
This is exciting news because it demonstrates not only that Lumosity can improve the basic cognitive abilities that affect our everyday lives, but also that this improvement is accompanied by functional changes in brain activity in the pre-frontal cortex. This is the part of the brain most responsible for the mental abilities referred to as executive functions — the ability to plan, organize information, focus attention, and remember complex events and concepts.
Cancer in general, and childhood cancer in particular, often results in decreased cognitive function. These negative changes tend to persist over time, and can get even worse with age. This tendency makes Kesler’s results all the more exciting.
While this study does have its limitations – the analysis did not include a control group – it nevertheless offers another piece of evidence that cognitive training with Lumosity can change the brain for the better. That’s great news for everyone who wants to rejuvenate their brain!