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Facilitating Mindfulness Training

$68,000
136%
Raised toward our $50,000 Goal
135 Donors
Project has ended
Project ended on October 08, at 11:59 PM MST
Project Owners

Facilitating Mindfulness Training

The problem

Mindfulness is the ability to focus on the present moment with openness and acceptance, even during difficult or painful circumstances. Science suggests that mindfulness reduces stress, enhances health, and promotes life-satisfaction.

While mindfulness can be trained with practice, it takes time and effort. People often find it challenging to stay with the practice. Unsurprisingly, people with issues like depression and chronic pain may have an especially hard time persisting even though they could experience significant benefits.

What if we could lower the initial barriers to mindfulness training?

We are investigating an exciting way to help people develop mindfulness skills by combining the practice with ultrasound neuromodulation. This technique allows us to temporarily modulate brain activity with low-intensity focused ultrasound. In a small pilot experiment, we inhibited a region of the brain that may interfere with mindfulness practice. That region is called the Default Mode Network (DMN). The results were encouraging -- participants’ brain scans showed a significant reduction in DMN activity, as we predicted (click here to see the pilot results). Most importantly, subjects also reported an enhanced state of mindfulness measured by standardized scales.

Help us Reach Our Goal

We are looking to fund an experiment to replicate these pilot-results but with a double-blind, placebo-controlled design. We will collect brain scans while we target the DMN with focused ultrasound. This intervention should enhance state mindfulness and alter behavior on tasks designed to measure mindful awareness. We will also analyze brain activity and behavior to confirm safety and efficacy. To see a detailed overview and scientific abstract, click this link.

Success with this project will lead to a natural next step: examine how this technoboost might synergize with a full course in mindfulness training. 

We invite you to take part in our scientific journey exploring a new hopeful direction for clinical populations and, moving forward, more mindful moments for a world facing challenging times.                                                                    

More info

Our Work

For more information, please see the experiment overview and our lab website.

Our Team

Click the "Project Owners" pictures for bios or see our lab website for the full team.

Resources

TEDx BigSky | A Technoboost for Meditation |  Jay Sanguinetti  

Stanford BrainMind Summit | Accelerating Mindfulness Training with Ultrasonic Neuromodulation | Jay Sanguinetti

Resources on mindfulness | Articles |  Shinzen Young

Resources on mindfulness | Unified Mindfulness System |  Shinzen Young & Julianna Raye

Resources on mindfulness | Brightmind |  Shinzen Young

 

 

Levels
Choose a giving level

$10

General Fund

Contribute to the general experiment fund.

$25

One Week of Supplies

Help us buy supplies for the experiment.

$50

Reimbursement for One Subject

This pays the subject for participating in our experiment.

$460

One Hour of Scanner Time

This funds one fMRI scan for the experiment.

$1,000

Super Supporter

Fund our staff and help us realize our vision.

$5,000

Angel Donor

For those with the vision to bring this project into the world quickly.

Our Crowdfunding Groups