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July 29, 2022 8:36 am
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Israel’s NeuraLight, NeuroSense Therapeutics Collaborate to Detect ALS Using AI

avatar by CTech Staff

An MRI that is consistent with the diagnosis of ALS. Photo: Frank Gaillard via Wikimedia Commons.

CTech – Israeli companies NeuraLight, which develops objective and sensitive biomarkers for monitoring and measuring neurological diseases, and NeuroSense Therapeutics, a company that develops treatments for patients suffering from debilitating neurodegenerative diseases, have announced today a collaboration between them aimed at promoting the research of biological markers and the ability to diagnose and monitor degenerative neurological diseases, including Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS).

NeuraLight was founded by CEO Micha Breakstone and CTO Edmund Benami as well as scientific co-founder Gil Shklarski, who previously served as CTO of Flatiron Health. The company’s platform uses unique computer vision and deep learning algorithms to extract over 100 digital oculometric markers (microscopic measurements of eye movement) from video footage, using a standard webcam. Neurosense is conducting a Phase IIb PARADIGM trial using a double-blind sample and including a control group that received a placebo dose designed to identify the effectiveness of its combination drug PrimeC in the treatment of muscular dystrophy patients.

As part of the collaboration between NeuraLight and NeuroSense Therapeutics, the two companies will monitor patients and share data to improve diagnoses and use of digital biomarkers for ALS patients in a parallel trial conducted by NeuraLight. The collaboration marks NeuraLight’s first clinical trial, which was launched following the company’s $25 million round.

Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) is an incurable neurodegenerative disease that causes complete paralysis and death within 2-5 years of diagnosis. In the US alone, over 5,000 patients are diagnosed yearly with ALS, and researchers anticipate the number of ALS patients in the US to grow 24 percent by 2040. The cause of ALS is unknown, making it difficult for researchers to develop disease-modifying therapies for the neurodegenerative disease.

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“There is compelling value in the use of precise biomarkers to diagnose and track the progression of neurodegenerative diseases. We are very pleased to work with the stellar team at NeuraLight who are pioneering the development of digital oculometric biomarkers, which complement our extensive evaluation of biological markers of ALS,” said NeuroSense CEO Alon Ben-Noon. “We believe these tools have the potential to enable patient stratification and increase the likelihood of success in a future NeuroSense pivotal trial of PrimeC in the treatment of ALS. This is a first step in what we envision as a long-term collaboration with NeuraLight in ALS as well as future studies we plan for Alzheimer’s disease and Parkinson’s disease.”

Dr. Rivka Kreitman, NeuraLight’s Chief Innovation Officer, commented, “Along with advancing a promising therapy for ALS, we look forward to demonstrating that oculometrics serve as a robust proxy for the Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis Functional Rating Scale (ALSFRS) through this partnership. The validation of our technology’s efficacy will improve success rates of trials moving forward – ensuring objectivity, reliability, and replicability, as well as reducing costs and friction.”

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