Researchers at Spain’s Universidad Politécnica de Madrid (UPM) and start-up AURA Innotive Robotics have developed a new robotic system called OSCANN Desk, designed to accurately analyse eye movements for detecting neurodegenerative diseases such as Parkinson’s disease and dementia.
The fast yet non-invasive technology leverages imaging processing and machine learning to deliver objective brain functioning data, which is expected to aid in early diagnosis and customised treatments.
OSCANN Desk can be used in a healthcare centre, where personnel will perform certain calibration and clinical tests that take around one minute each.
The medical device is attached to a patient’s anatomy to measure the eye movement while they look at the stimulus displayed on a monitor.
These tests were used by the researchers to create pathology models.
The team then applied machine learning techniques to identify similarities and differences amongst more than 500 variables of eye movement. According to the team, some symptoms can be objectively measured using a similar approach.
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The tests were already applied for Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s disease, diverse dementias, mild cognitive impairment and multiple sclerosis, among others.
Furthermore, the researchers are working towards leveraging the tests for other conditions, including autistic spectrum disorders, epilepsy, alcoholism, migraines, depression, bipolar disorder and diabetes.
OSCANN Desk is being studied in a clinical trial at six Spanish hospitals in Spain, with plans to bring the device to the country’s HM Hospitals, particularly for the HM CINAC’s Memory Disorders Unit at the Hospital Universitario HM Madrid.