Startup Postdoc at Runway, Jacobs Institute
Charles Rodenkirch, PhD is a neural engineer and CEO of Sharper Sense. He is driven by a passion for developing technology at the intersection of electronics and biology that positively impacts users’ lives. As a computational and systems neuroscientist, with formal education in biomedical engineering and computer science, is uniquely positioned to develop bioelectronic methods of treating neurological disorders, neurodegeneration, and impaired neural processes.
His doctoral research at Columbia University used the latest in brain-computer interfaces, biological tools, computational modeling, and statistical analysis to investigate how brain state (e.g. attention, arousal) affects sensory processing and perception. Through gaining insight into how the mind naturally modulates sensory processing, Dr. Rodenkirch was able to develop methods of enhancing sensory function on demand by activating neural circuitry that optimizes brain state for clear perception.
Sharper Sense’s technology is based on his impactful research, which has been published in top neuroscience journals, such as Nature Neuroscience. The company is now working to package this technology into noninvasive nerve stimulation patches that can be easily taken on and off and worn throughout tasks that require clear vision, hearing, and touch. This technology has great potential to treat neurodegenerative sensory loss and sensory processing disorders as well as provide performance and safety enhancement by reducing misperceptions and miscommunication.
Charles has prior leadership and entrepreneurial experience from his undergraduate degree at the University of Wisconsin-Madison where he co-founded a cell phone repair company and was elected president of the UW-Madison Waterski and Wakeboard Team. During his graduate studies, Dr. Rodenkirch gained experience with technology transfer through working as a Fellow for Columbia Technology Ventures.
Dr. Rodenkirch’s current sole focus is leading Sharper Sense’s commercialization of neurotechnology that has great potential to benefit a large swath of society. Sharper Sense has been honored to be selected for, and taken part in, Columbia’s Biomedical Technology Accelerator (BiomedX), NYC’s Health Tech Entrepreneurship Lab (ELabNYC), the Comcast NBCUniversal SportsTech Accelerator, and the Cornell Tech Postdoc Runway Program. You can read more about our technology at www.SharperSense.com and see a full list of Dr. Rodenkirch’s publications here.