March 2, 2021

LIVE ONLINE: Tuesday, March 16 @ 8PM, Secret Science Club presents the "Dana Foundation Brain Lecture" with Neuroscientist Yasmin Hurd, FREE!

Secret Science Club presents the “Dana Foundation Brain Lecture” with Neuroscientist Yasmin Hurd (in honor of Brain Awareness Week) 

Join us live via Zoom on Tuesday, March 16 @ 8PM (Eastern Time USA) "Doors" open at 7:30PM 

Shhh... everyone on our mailing list will be emailed the Zoom link the night before. To join the Secret Science Club mailing list (or just request the Zoom link), send us an email (

It is one year into the pandemic, and there is no question that the increased stress and social isolation are having a psychological effect on our society—and perhaps even long-term effects on our brains. One area of particular concern is how the pandemic is affecting our use (and abuse) of drugs and alcohol, as well as the impact on people with existing addiction disorders.

At the next Secret Science Club, neuroscientist Yasmin Hurd highlights these critical issues as well as discussing her own groundbreaking research on cannabis and opioids. In her talk, "The Vulnerable Brain: Pathways to and from Addiction," Dr. Hurd asks:

--What is addiction, and how does it affect and even change the brain?
--Why are some brains more vulnerable to substance abuse and addiction? What is the role of stress?
--How does marijuana use impact the developing brain? What’s the story with CBD?
--What are some pathways out of addiction? How might cannabinoids be used to treat opioid dependence?

Yasmin Hurd is a professor of psychiatry, neuroscience and pharmacological sciences at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai; director of the Addiction Institute at the Mount Sinai Behavioral Health System; Ward-Coleman Chair of Translational Neuroscience at Mount Sinai; and a member of the Dana Alliance for Brain Initiatives. She has conducted pioneering research on the neurobiology of opioid abuse, the neurodevelopmental (and cross-generational) effects of cannabis, and potential treatments for opioid addiction. A member of the National Academy of Medicine, Dr. Hurd and her research have been featured on NPR, ABC, and CNN, and in the New York Times, Time, and Discover.

--Mix your own “Gray Matter” mocktail… (recipe below!)
--Groove to synapse-soothing tunes
--Bring your questions for the live Q&A
--Take a peek at the Dana Foundation's digital magazine, Cerebrum, for news, podcasts, and analysis on emerging ideas in brain science
--Learn how you can participate in Brain Awareness Week, the global campaign to foster enthusiasm and support for brain science

This edition of Secret Science Club - featuring Yasmin Hurd - is supported by the Dana Foundation in celebration of Brain Awareness Week. The Dana Foundation is dedicated to advancing understanding about the brain in health and disease through research grants and public outreach.

Brain Awareness Week is the global campaign to foster public enthusiasm and support for brain science. Every March, partners host imaginative activities in their communities that share the wonders of the brain and the impact brain science has on our everyday lives. Search the calendar of events for fun and fascinating events around the world!

This is a FREE event.

What’s next at Secret Science Club online?
Stay tuned for naturalist & author Scott Weidensaul on Tuesday, April 6!

(Note: If you don't already have the Zoom meeting app on your computer or mobile device, you can download it for free at

Recipe for “Gray Matter” Mocktail (created by Secret Science Club’s Experimental Mixology Lab)
Ingredients: Homemade Lemonade sweetened to your taste (or good quality store-bought lemonade), ⅓ cup Blueberries, Club Soda
- Reserve a few berries for later, and mash the remaining blueberries in a bowl
- Pour the mashed blueberries into a highball glass
- Add ⅓ glass lemonade
- Muddle all ingredients
- Fill highball glass with ice, and top off with club soda
- Garnish with a few whole berries

This program is supported, in part, by public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council.

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