STTR Phase I: Development and Validation of a Speech-Based Portable Concussion Screening Tool

Period of Performance: 01/01/2015 - 12/31/2015

$225K

Phase 1 STTR

Recipient Firm

Contect, Inc.
4637 N Central Park #2s
Chicago, IL 46617
Firm POC, Principal Investigator

Research Institution

University of Notre Dame
940 Grace Hall
Notre Dame, IN 46556
Institution POC

Abstract

The broader impact/commercial potential of this Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) Phase I project is found in the creation of a faster, more portable, affordable, and reliable concussion screening tool. This is important because of the large number of concussions occurring during youth sport events (estimates range between 2 and 4 million cases per year) and the potential longterm health problems of concussions. The primary concept behind this technology is the collection of brief speech samples using the microphone of a portable device and the instant speech analysis that informs a physician or athletic trainer of significant deviations of certain speech patterns. With widespread use, this technology will make detection of concussions easier and faster and will allow injured athletes to obtain appropriate treatment as quickly as possible. The addressable market for this technology in just the U.S. and E.U. athletic market segments is $6B. This estimate is based on a competitive price point compared to existing concussion screening tools. Additionally, this technology helps address the overall economic impact of untreated concussions, which is estimated to be more than $60B annually. The proposed project will play a key role in the development of a novel concussion screening tool based on speech as a biomarker. Currently, almost 90% of concussions remain undetected, primarily due to the lack of easytouse, rapid, and accurate testing tools. The project will provide a deeper understanding of the relationship between brain injuries and their impacts on speech production, and how to build a toolkit to measure these changes. This STTR team?s Phase I research project will lead to the development of speech processing algorithms on mobile devices, capable of measuring speech changes in any setting. Once the tool is developed a proof of concept study will be undertaken which will compare physician diagnosed concussions versus the Contect test. The fundamental goal