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Volunteer for research

Please note: Recruitment of new participants is halted due to covid-19. Please check back for future updates


Get involved! See below for ways to participate in ongoing studies at the Picower Institute and Aging Brain Initiative.

Application of Sensory Stimulation for Gamma Frequency Entrainment

 IRB # 1712179268

The Tsai Laboratory is looking for healthy women volunteers ages 55-85 to participate in a study looking at how light and sound effect the brain. You will be asked to come to our laboratory for a 1-time visit lasting approximately 3.5 hours. During the first hour, you will complete memory testing. For the remaining 2.5 hours, you will be asked to complete an electroencephalogram (EEG) recording where we will record your brain wave activity. You will be asked to do activities including sitting with your eyes open or closed or watching a movie. All participants will be compensated for their time.

If interested, please contact Gabrielle de Weck.

Acute Treatment of Alzheimer’s disease with Gamma Frequency Stimulation

IRB # 1902706647

The Tsai Laboratory is actively recruiting patients who have early to mild stage Alzheimer's disease to participate in our study that aims to evaluate the feasibility and safety of using light and sound sensory stimulation in people diagnosed with early to mild Alzheimer’s disease.

This Study Involves:

  • One visit to MIT lasting approximately 4.5 hours.
  • Cognitive health evaluations, EEG recording, short exposures to our light and sound stimulation in various combinations and Pre- and post- assessments in a lab setting at MIT. 
  • Financial compensation of up to $75 upon completion of the study

Are You Eligible? 

  • Be between the ages of 50-100
  • Clinical diagnosis of early to mild Alzheimer’s disease*
  • Have no history of seizures, epilepsy, stroke, or other significant neurological disorders.
  • Not currently prescribed memantine for memory difficulties (ex. Namenda, Namenda Titration Pak, and Namenda XR)
  • Local to the Greater Boston area
  • Fluent in English

Please note that participation in this one visit does not guarantee eligibility in future clinical trials conducted at MIT but also does not exclude anyone from participating.

If interested, please contact If interested, please contact Gabrielle de Weck. for more information.


Research Study Volunteers Needed

IRB # 1804343699A001

The Neuroscience Statistics Research Laboratory is looking for healthy volunteers to participate in a study about physiological signals. Electrodermal activity (EDA) measures sweat gland activity in the skin. Heartrate variability is a normally occurring phenomenon in all people. EEG measures brain activity. All you will be asked to do is come to our lab and spend about 3 hours with several electrodes attached to your non-dominant hand and wrist, a few standard adhesive medical electrodes on the torso and forehead, and a belt around the torso to collect data. During the first hour, you can bring something to read or watch; we just ask that you not sleep or type on a computer using the hand with electrodes. During the second hour, we will ask you to do several tasks intended to cause changes in your “fight-or-flight” response, like breathing along with a metronome, standing and sitting repeatedly, looking at specific pictures, gripping and holding a dynamometer at a certain force, dipping your hand in a container of ice water, and being strapped to a tilt table. You will be reimbursed for your time with a gift card for $10 at the end.

If interested, please contact Sandya Subramanian (

Research Study Volunteers Needed

IRB # 1908962521

This study looks at how the brain responds to light and sound stimulation in Individuals with Down syndrome

Criteria for Participation:

  • Be between the ages of 25-65.
  • Clinical Diagnosis of Down syndrome.
  • Have no history of seizures, epilepsy or stroke in the past 24 months.
  • Not on active treatment with an anti-epileptic agent.
  • Have no history of major depression, bipolar disorder or psychotic disorders, or any other major psychiatric condition.
  • Have no history of migraine headaches.

This single-session, approximately 3.5 hour-long study involves:

  • Pre-study mental health evaluations – You will be asked to answer a series of questions and fill out a questionnaire.
  • EEG recordings – A cap with electrodes will be placed on your head in order to measure your brain activity.
  • Exposure to light flicker and/or click sounds delivered at high frequencies – You will be asked to sit in front of an LED panel with speakers and look at the panel while they output light and sounds that are meant to alter your brain activity.
  • Additional cognitive testing following light/sound stimulation session

  • Financial compensation up to $75 at the completion of the study visit

If interested, please contact Gabrielle de Weck by email at or call 617-258-7723.