Wednesday, March 13, 2013

GLNT Secures NIH Funding

Great Lakes Neuro Technologies (GLNT) funded by NIH for $1,743,051 with a Phase II SBIR grant, is launching commercialization and clinical studies to validate a system to continuously monitor dyskinesias associated with Parkinson’s disease (PD).

The technology will be developed and commercialized at GLNT with clinical validation studies to be completed at the University of Rochester, Johns Hopkins University, and Albany Medical College.

Patients with PD often have side effects using common therapies to treat motor symptoms known as dyskinesias which are involuntary and irregular rapid movements. Severe dyskinesias can cause patient exhaustion, fatigue, social isolation, and depression, as well as increase healthcare costs.

Specifically, the NIH-funded program will develop a patient worn system of motion sensors that can continuously assess the presence and severity of dyskinesias as a patient goes about their daily activities. The technology integrates wireless patient sensing with a home-based tablet that transfers patient reports over a broadband link to a cloud server. The technology will help clinicians to optimize existing treatments or help pharmaceutical companies during clinical trials to evaluate new treatments.

The two year program will focus on two specific development stages. Year 1 will focus on technology development to include sensor development, patient ergonomics, and technology integration. Year 2 will then utilize the technology in a multi-site clinical trial to validate and compare with traditional dyskinesia measurement tools and to demonstrate improved patient care when integrating continuous dyskinesia monitoring in patient homes.

As new therapies emerge to better control or delay the onset of dyskinesias, it is important that innovative monitoring and assessment technologies are able to gage treatment efficacy,” said Thomas Mera, Product Development Manager at GLNT and Principal Investigator on the program.

He continued to explain, “Traditional strategies for assessing dyskinesia include subjective clinical rating scales and using patient diaries. While clinical rating scales have proved useful, clinicians cannot be continuously present, or at the patient’s home.”

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