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Noninvasive sleep enhancement and behavior monitoring technologies for Alzheimer's model mice

Award Information
Agency: Department of Health and Human Services
Branch: National Institutes of Health
Contract: 1R41AG082600-01
Agency Tracking Number: R41AG082600
Amount: $180,612.00
Phase: Phase I
Program: STTR
Solicitation Topic Code: NIA
Solicitation Number: PAS19-317
Solicitation Year: 2019
Award Year: 2023
Award Start Date (Proposal Award Date): 2023-07-01
Award End Date (Contract End Date): 2024-12-31
Small Business Information
145 Graham Ave
Lexington, KY 40506-0001
United States
DUNS: 964938455
HUBZone Owned: No
Woman Owned: No
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: No
Principal Investigator
 (859) 257-2805
Business Contact
Phone: (650) 814-9918
Research Institution
LEXINGTON, KY 40526-0001
United States

 Nonprofit College or University

The aims of this project are to develop new technologies to identify and track sleep and wake
abnormalities present in mouse models of Alzheimer’s disease (AD), as well as to test a sleep enhancement
technology for applications in AD animal research. Signal Solutions, LLC, has previously developed and
commercialized a piezoelectric based system for noninvasive, high-throughput sleep and wake monitoring of
rodents. Automated scoring of sleep and wake allows for simultaneous recordings of many animals over longer
periods, with little burden on the researcher, rivalling EEG/EMG methods that are more complicated and
expensive to perform.Behavioral changes in sleep and wake can precede memory loss in the progression of Alzheimer’s
disease (AD). Clinical studies suggest sleep disturbances are exhibited in a high percentage of AD patients.
Animal models of AD also display sleep disturbances and some models show changes in wake behaviors
before the molecular hallmarks and memory problems appear, as clearly occurs in human AD. In the treatment
of AD, a potential therapeutic target is preventing the aggregation of pathogenic forms of amyloid-beta (A-beta)
and tau. Waste clearance in the brain has been shown to be increased with increased sleep, including
clearance of A-beta. Recently, non-pharmacological approaches using mechanical devices for rocking have
shown promise for sleep enhancement, which could be applied to AD research.The specific aims of this project are to 1) Develop advanced sleep/wake tracking technology: Add a
new multipoint touch sensor to our current piezoelectric technology that together will identify specific behaviors
associated with AD progression, tested with AD mouse model 3xTg. 2) Develop Sleep Enhancement
Technology: Modify our current MouseQwake sleep-disruption system for mechanical sleep-enhancement,
with companion sleep and wake tracking capabilities.
Anticipated Outcomes: The envisioned product is a home cage sensor and software that will allow
researchers to accurately measure changes in sleep and wake during long-term AD disease progression, as
well as track subtle changes in behavior in AD model mice. This system will minimize the amount of work, time
testing behaviors, and time for analyzing the videos or electrophysiology that is currently a major bottleneck.
An expanded MouseQwake system will provide a tool for sleep manipulation of both sleep enhancement and
disruption as well as simultaneous sleep/wake and behavioral recording. If successful, a Phase II investigation
will involve large scale studies of multiple AD rodent models, and continue iterative improvements to both
hardware and software developed in phase I.

* Information listed above is at the time of submission. *

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