A computer software program developed at NJIT for early diagnosis of Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s and other diseases has won the most coveted title at a recent New Jersey Technology Council competition. Based at NJIT’s business incubator program, the Enterprise Development Center, NeuroTrax www.neurotrax.com, a start-up company, was named most likely to succeed. The event drew 60 young companies and 500 entrepreneurs and investors.
NeuroTrax develops and markets diagnostic products and devices for healthcare and life sciences. The debut product platform, Mindstreams®, provides medical professionals and pharmaceutical companies with real-time objective measurement of cognitive function. “This is critical for empowering early diagnosis and treatment for memory loss as well as outcome measurements for drug trials,” said Ely Simon, MD.
NeuroTrax is the brainchild of founder and chief executive officer, Simon. The company numbers among 83 similar technology enterprises based at NJIT’s Enterprise Development Center. The Center is New Jersey’s pioneering business incubator program.
Patients with memory loss and other cognitive problems are now typically tested on paper by a neuropsychologist located outside the office who administers and scores the test. “A full evaluation by a neuropsychologist is often impractical due to time and cost factors,” Simon said. “Mindstreams, however, is a step forward because it enables the physician to arrive at a faster diagnosis. The program also provides an easier and more reliable way for physicians to track the patient’s progress over time.”
The interactive software program had initially focused on discovering mild cognitive impairment and the early detection of Alzheimer’s disease. The software program can also be used for early detection of Parkinson’s disease, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, multiple sclerosis, schizophrenia, and traumatic brain injury.
Mindstreams has been established in 23 peer-reviewed scientific publications and presented at more than 80 international conferences. Simon has 20 years experience in computerized measurement systems design.
Chief marketing officer is John Rooney who has held executive positions at Roche Diagnostics, Terumo Medical Corp. and Johnson & Johnson.
Since 1988, NJIT’s Enterprise Development Center has enabled inventors to move innovative products out of the laboratory and into the marketplace. A high-tech business incubator housed in a trio of Newark buildings, the Center provides office and lab space, financial help, business and technical services, and the shared expertise of the center’s managers. The Center is open to for-profit enterprises, operating fewer than four years and that offer new technologies. The companies must have a business plan, and show evidence that they will be likely to benefit from the three-year tenancies available. The Center has graduated more than 75 companies.