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CQUni seeks Brisbane-based participants for study into herbal supplements effects on the brain

Published:06 October 2021

Participants in a CQUniversity study into the effects of herbal supplements on brain function will wear a headband like device on the forehead, which uses light senses to measure brain activity, while they complete the computer tasks.

A CQUniversity study into whether herbal supplements can improve attention, memory and behaviour over long periods is looking for participants in the Brisbane area.

Lead Researcher Associate Professor Talitha Best said the study is building upon previous CQUniversity research which showed that a combination of herbal extracts supported memory performance, with effects immediate on the same day of testing.

“Evidence from a range of scientific studies demonstrate promising beneficial effects of nutrients such as Vitamins B, C and D, and herbal extracts such as ginseng and Bacopa on brain function,” she said.

“The current study is looking at the longer-term effects on memory performance and overall mood of the same combination of ingredients used in the previous study in order to promote brain health and function.”

The research is supported by USANA Health Science Inc., in collaboration with CQUniversity and Nanyang Technological University, Singapore.

As part of the study, participants attend three visits to Brisbane campus to complete tasks of memory and attention.

Participants take either an active or inactive supplement for four weeks followed by two weeks of no-supplementation.

“This project is seeking to observe the effects of a herbal supplement over six weeks on tasks of attention, memory and behaviour,” she said.

“We place a headband like device on the participant’s forehead, which uses light senses to measure brain activity, while they complete the computer tasks.”

Assoc Prof Best said while participants had been enthusiastic at the outset, COVID-19 restrictions and lockdowns had slowed the progress.

“We are now looking for another 30 healthy adults aged 35-65 to take part,” she said.

“We are expecting to finish the data collection for the study this year, with the publication of findings planned for 2022.

She added that a $50 gift card is provided to eligible participants as an honorarium towards travel costs to the Brisbane campus.

To register your interest, visit https://cqu.syd1.qualtrics.com/jfe/form/SV_8vV7aagAZuG9MyO or email HrBI-study@cqu.edu.au