Advanced Brain Monitoring Inc (ABM) has received a grant from the National Institute on Aging (NIA) at the NIH to evaluate socially assistive robot (SAR) interventions to mitigate cognitive decline associated with aging and dementia.

This project addresses the need for alternative approaches to mitigating cognitive decline by introducing a robot companion that will interact and motivate patients in order to reinforce therapeutic behavior. “We are excited about bringing our expertise in the development and application of early stage dementia biomarkers and knowledge of human-machine interfaces into this novel approach,” says Chris Berka, Advanced Brain Monitoring CEO and principal investigator for the project, in a release.

The SAR intervention project team will incorporate the expertise of Maja Mataric, PhD, USC professor of computer science, neuroscience, and pediatrics, and Cory Kidd, PhD, CEO and founder of Catalia Health. The team will deploy Catalia Health’s “Mabu” robot to interact with participants in their homes to influence the development of healthy habits targeted at slowing the progression of cognitive decline in healthy elderly and mild cognitive impairment (MCI) patients.

This project builds on the progress of anotherAdvanced Brain Monitoring-led NIA grant that leverages EEG-biomarkers developed to map the trajectory of various dementias with characterization in the earliest detectable stages of the pathophysiological processes. “This project extends ABM’s technology platform intended for neurology and psychiatry and deployed in clinical trials worldwide to evaluate new treatments for neurodegeneration,” Berka says. “We foresee the potential for the robot intervention to be used alone or in combination with other treatments for dementia.”