The Path to Zero is One: Power of Precision in Accelerating Discovery and Innovation for Brain Health.

January 2019’s Nexus Series Seminar with Dr. Rhoda Au

Rather than treating brain disease when symptoms appear, how can we predict and treat people before they even get sick? Dr. Rhoda Au’s Nexus seminar pivoted on this paradigm shift, and the flexible healthcare technology providers need to facilitate it. Dr. Au’s Precision Brain Health Initiative aims to build an adaptable, secure, and interactive platform that passively collects patient data to predict neurodegenerative risk – and implement interventions – before it develops into illness.

From grappling with the challenges of making medical data securely open source to workshopping how a platform could be resistant to the rapid evolution of personal technology, Dr. Au sparked conversation across the spectrum of academic, industry, and development experts in the room.


Photo of Dr. Rhoda AuDr. Rhoda Au is Professor of Anatomy & Neurobiology, Neurology and Epidemiology at Boston University Schools of Medicine and Public Health. She also currently serves as Director of Neuropsychology at the Framingham Heart Study, where she has been involved in research related to cognitive aging and dementia since 1990. Most recently, she has been exploring the potential of cognitive digital biomarkers and how “big data” analytics can better inform our understanding of Alzheimer’s disease pathways and treatment. Beyond Framingham, Dr. Au is focused on building multi-sector ecosystems to enable solutions for chronic disease prevention generally and optimizing brain health specifically and to move the primary focus of health technologies from precision medicine to a broader emphasis on precision health.


  • Discuss the ongoing and expanding research, development, and implementation around Precision Brain Health, as a part of the rapidly expanding precision health movement
  • Expand ecosystem of collaborations with computer scientists, basic scientists, clinicians, industry, and other thought leaders
  • Gather feedback on organization and infrastructure, including mapping long-term goals to grow the Precision Brain Health Initiative into a global entity

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