Co-Founder & Chief Scientific Officer, Posit Science
Professor Emeritus, University of California, San Francisco
As co-founder, Chief Scientific Officer of Posit Science and the brain behind BrainHQ, Michael Merzenich heads the company's science team. For more than five decades, Dr. Merzenich has been a leading pioneer in brain plasticity research. In the late 1980s, Dr. Merzenich was leading the team that invented the cochlear implant, now distributed by market leader Advanced Bionics. In 1996, he was the founding CEO of Scientific Learning Corporation (Nasdaq: SCIL), which markets and distributes software that applies principles of brain plasticity to assist children with language learning and reading.
Dr. Merzenich has published more than 150 articles in leading peer-reviewed journals (such as Science and Nature), received numerous awards and prizes (including the Ipsen Prize, Zülch Prize, Thomas Alva Edison Patent Award and Purkinje Medal), and been granted nearly 100 patents for his work. He and his work have been highlighted in hundreds of books about the brain, learning, rehabilitation, and plasticity. Dr. Merzenich's work is also often covered in the popular press, including the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, Time, Forbes, Discover, and Newsweek. He has appeared extensively on television programs in the United States and Canada including David Suzuki's "The Nature of Things" as well as TVO's "The Agenda" with Steve Paikin.
Dr. Merzenich earned his bachelor's degree at the University of Portland and his PhD at Johns Hopkins. He completed a post-doctoral fellowship at the University of Wisconsin in Madison before becoming a professor at the University of California, San Francisco. In 2007, he retired from his long career at UCSF as Francis A. Sooy Professor and Co-Director of the Keck Center for Integrative Neuroscience. He was elected to the National Academy of Sciences in 1999 and the Institute of Medicine in 2008; Dr. Merzenich's seminal contributions have led many to regard him as the "father of brain plasticity."
In Dr. Merzenich's words:
"We have worked hard in our labs and done our share to help people understand their brain and show them how to prevent unnecessary brain aging or fix it before it's too late; beyond this point it's their responsibility to take it or drop it!"
Why Brain Fitness by Dr. Michael Merzenich