FAU, Thema Brain Health and Research Park at FAU Forge Innovative Partnership

/ Andrew Duffell

Partnership is expected to positively impact on the community’s brain health and further the mission of the FAU Health Network.

BOCA RATON, Fla. (January 9, 2024) – The Research Park at Florida Atlantic University® and FAU’s Schmidt College of Medicine are excited to announce an innovative partnership with Thema Brain Health.  Thema is establishing a cognitive brain health center on the campus of the Research Park at FAU. Thema is redefining brain health by changing from treatment of identifiable symptoms to prevention through easily accessible and efficient brain health assessments and remediation. 

The partnership is expected to have a positive impact on the community’s brain health and will further the mission of the FAU Health Network, a collaboration of national, regional and local health, research, academic and community leaders. The partnership is poised to revolutionize the approach to preventing and treating cognitive impairment-related diseases.

According to the United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, in 2023, 6.7 million Americans are living with Alzheimer’s disease (AD), the most common type of dementia. Without the development of medical breakthroughs to prevent, treat, slow or cure AD that number is estimated to grow to 13.8 million by 2060. In Florida, 580,000 people ages 65 and older are living with AD, and 827,000 family caregivers bear the burden of the disease.

“The collaboration between Thema Brain Health and FAU is a testament to our unwavering commitment to advancing healthcare in South Florida,” said Michael R. Dobbs, M.D., a professor and chair of the Clinical Neurosciences Department, and the FairfaxWood Endowed Chair of Clinical Neurosciences in FAU’s Schmidt College of Medicine. “By combining cutting-edge technology with academic medicine, we are working to transform the way brain health is approached to ultimately improve the lives of those at risk of and affected by cognitive impairment.”

With the goal of preventing AD and other related dementias, Thema Brain Health empowers patients to take control of their brain health at any age and provides the latest information to take remedial action as early as possible. Thema’s comprehensive and convenient programs will take the mystery out of brain health.

“There are four major diseases associated with aging: atherosclerotic vascular disease, cancer, type 2 diabetes, and neurodegenerative diseases, predominantly Alzheimer’s disease. Over the last fifty years, tremendous progress has been made in the treatment and prevention of these diseases, with the exception of Alzheimer’s disease,” said Robert Colton, M.D., co-founder and chairman, Thema Brain Health, who also founded MDVIP® and Clearly Derm. “While aging is inevitable, Thema Brain Health is on a mission to ensure that cognitive decline is not. It’s never too early to assess your risk factors and prevent cognitive decline. We know so much more about brain health today than we’ve ever known.”

Dr. Rob Colton, co-founder and chairman

In addition to serving a growing number of people in the community, it is anticipated that Thema Brain Health will become an important training site for FAU medical students and resident physicians. Thema Brain Health will work closely with FAU’s Schmidt College of Medicine, the Phyllis and Harvey Sandler School of Social Work within FAU’s College of Social Work and Criminal Justice and other FAU colleges and departments.

“Neurologists and neuropsychologists are swamped with patients. This leaves people with risk factors and earlier concerns of cognitive deficits with few options to address these concerns and prevent progression of the disease,” said Seth Harlem, co-founder and CEO of Thema Brain Health. “This is where Thema comes in.”

The Research Park at FAU, home to technology companies and research-based organizations, fosters economic development and broadens the economic base of Broward and Palm Beach counties.

“Thema Brain Health is a vital addition to the Research Park at FAU, ensuring increased quality of research and patient care in our region,” said Andrew Duffell, president of the Research Park at FAU. “This collaboration between Thema Brain Health and FAU demonstrates a strong commitment to advancing health care delivery in South Florida and providing innovative care to the communities served by the FAU Health Network.” 

The partnership between Thema Brain Health and FAU represents a significant milestone in FAU’s mission to provide innovative care for its communities, ultimately improving the quality of life for people at risk of cognitive impairment, people with suspected mild cognitive impairment or mild AD as well as their families. 

“Thema Brain Health’s center at the Research Park at FAU paves the way for enhanced brain health and advances in healthcare delivery in South Florida,” said Sam Lehr, co-founder and chief strategy officer, Thema Brain Health. 

Andrew Duffell

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