Projects: Real-world applications of breakthrough findings in brain health

Brain health linked to gut health and gut flora. UC Davis discovering ways to prevent prevent dementia and cognitive health throughout life.

Projects spark groundbreaking discoveries in optimal brain health

Imagine a meeting between a nutritionist, a pharmaceutical engineer and a gerontologist that leads to a conversation about the link between gut health and brain aging. That exchange sparks a groundbreaking project that pinpoints the specific bacteria linked to dementia, then develops a drug capable of targeting these bacteria without immune system damage—a game-changing intervention. Down the hall, another conversation between a neurologist, a physicist and a start-up entrepreneur inspires a research team to adapt brain-machine interfaces developed to treat epilepsy as part of a breakthrough approach using light to enhance memory and promote cognitive health.

Projects like these are just some of the possibilities envisioned by the Healthy Brain Aging Initiative.

The future of healthy aging requires partnerships in a variety of fields

UC Davis believes the most critical discoveries take place at the intersection of fields—where many perspectives come together to tackle complex issues like aging and cognitive health. We will be a potent incubator for research and clinical breakthroughs that improve the quality of life for today’s seniors, and change the trajectory of brain aging for the future.Through an interdisciplinary approach to research, innovation and clinical care, we will collaborate across fields to ask novel questions about brain health and yield unprecedented insights and solutions. We will advance groundbreaking pilot programs to generate new discoveries in the mechanisms of brain aging, and we will translate these discoveries into interventions aimed at enhancing healthy brain function at every stage of life.

Bridge cutting edge research with real-world applications

  • Spur innovative projects at the cutting edge of neuroscience by supporting pilot programs in brain research and technology development
  • Sponsor impactful programs that change how the public views brain aging by funding a signature outreach initiative that could be applied globally
  • Speed the translation of discoveries into products that advance brain health by endowing faculty impact grants


UC Davis is committed to supporting optimal brain health for all. We invite the partnership of our alumni and friends in sponsoring research and clinical interventions that advance the science of healthy aging and better quality of life.