SBIR Phase I: Development of a Learning Tool for ADHD that Enhances Memory During Sleep
National Science Foundation
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Small Business Information
Sheepdog Sciences Inc
264 Guerrero St, San Francisco, CA, 94103-2313
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged:
AbstractThis Small Business Innovation Research Phase I project supports the work of Sheepdog Sciences to develop novel methods to enhance learning for people diagnosed with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). This project is focused on developing low-cost devices that safely enhance cognitive function in K-12 students. The innovative tools being developed are based on a foundation of high-profile, peer-reviewed academic research in humans and animal models. The Sheepdog Sciences neuroenhancement technology uses multiple sensors to classify cognitive state and provides direct biofeedback to improve memory function. The device and related software under development will be used to assess the method?s efficacy in an education setting for students with ADHD. The engineering and early development tasks described here will overcome key technology and commercialization hurdles, including market-specific challenges to make the system amenable for use in K-12 settings and determine whether the method is sufficiently robust to be applicable for children. The broader impact/commercial potential of this project is to develop safe and inexpensive tools that permit children with learning disabilities to achieve their full potential. The effect of learning disabilities that limit cognitive performance can be particularly devastating to students in early formative years when educational environments and scholastic opportunities are most rich. The estimated prevalence of ADHD is 3-5% and rising. In the year 2000, the total cost related to caring for and treating persons with ADHD exceeded $27 billion, and the societal cost of ADHD (including healthcare costs and lost economic productivity) was between $36-52 billion. By improving learning and memory, the neuroenhancement device under development by Sheepdog Sciences has the opportunity to revolutionize how students with ADHD manage their symptoms and achieve in the classroom. Moreover, this technology has similar potential in other markets characterized by reduced memory function?including reduced memory function due to normal aging, neurodegenerative disorders such as Alzheimer?s disease, and neurodevelopmental disorders such as Down syndrome and autism spectrum disorders, each affecting millions of Americans. The long-term development path for this technology recognizes numerous additional potential markets for memory enhancement for students of all ages and abilities.
* information listed above is at the time of submission.