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Novel Neurotechnologies: Intervening on the Brain

The Nuffield Council on Bioethics has produced its latest report on the ethical, legal and social implications of novel neurotechnologies. This report is very timely because many of the technologies in question are on the cusp of moving from the research stage to the health context. They are important for a range of patients suffering from neurological conditions such as Parkinson’s Disease, Alzheimer’s, stroke, depression and OCD. Over 800,000 people suffer from dementia in the UK and 1 in 500 people have Parkinson’s Disease.

The Nuffield Council Working Party which produced the report, and which included involvement from MI’s Director, Graeme Laurie, seeks to strike a balance between the necessary caution required whenever science intervenes on the brain and the imperative to improve innovation, access and effective regulation of these technologies to help to ensure that the right treatments get to the right patients at the right time.