DURHAM, N.C., Sept. 18, 2017 /PRNewswire/ — NeuroPlus Inc., a Durham, N.C., startup developing brain-training technology to improve cognitive skills with video games, today announced a pilot study which showed that children with attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) demonstrated greater focus and decreased hyperactivity and impulsivity after training on the NeuroPlus video games system. The study, which also confirmed the product’s safety, was recently presented at the 6th World Congress on ADHD in Vancouver.
“Parents were asking how we could use our technology to help improve attention and self-control, so NeuroPlus was created with the primary focus to develop a solution that children are comfortable with: video games,” said NeuroPlus chief executive officer Jake Stauch. “We’re excited to see these results, showing NeuroPlus could address the needs of parents hoping to reduce inattention and hyperactivity in their children while also giving anyone, regardless of age, a way to sharpen and improve their focus.”
The study, “Efficacy of a combined neurofeedback, biofeedback and go/no-go training intervention for ADHD: a randomized controlled trial,” was led by Dr. Sandeep Vaishnavi, a neuropsychiatrist at Duke University’s Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences and director of the Neuropsychiatric Clinic at Carolina Partners in Mental Healthcare. Sixty participants aged 8 to 13 years old with ADHD were enrolled in the study, and subjects were randomly assigned to either 30 minutes of NeuroPlus training 3 times per week or a treatment-as-usual control group that continued their existing treatment regimen. The study lasted 10 weeks, and assessments administered before and after treatment showed improvements in the NeuroPlus group relative to the treatment-as-usual controls.
Statistically significant improvements were observed across multiple outcome measures, including the Conners Global Index (p = 0.010, Cohen’s d = 0.76), Conners Inattention subscale (p = 0.013, Cohen’s d = 0.73), Conners Hyperactivity/Impulsivity subscale (p = 0.040, Cohen’s d = 0.60), and the Quotient ADHD System Global Score (p = 0.005, Cohen’s d = 0.90). No adverse events were reported in the study.
“These results are very promising,” said Dr. Vaishnavi. “There is need to continue this course of study, but this type of training shows promising options for families looking for alternatives to support individuals with ADHD.”
NeuroPlus video games are available on iOS and Android devices and require a special EEG headset and monthly subscription. The games encourage users to focus and sit still through cognitive training tasks. For example, in the Axon game, players focus and sit still to help fly a dragon. The higher the focus, as measured through the EEG headset, the faster the dragon will fly. If a user moves around or loses focus, they lose control of the dragon.
Perquita Peña, a mother of twins with ADHD, has been a NeuroPlus user since January 2017. “I’m so impressed with the drastic changes that I’ve seen with my children’s grades since they started using NeuroPlus,” said Peña. “We don’t use medications because of the side effects, and we’re grateful to have something that really works and is fun for them.”
NeuroPlus was founded by Jake Stauch, who has more than 7 years experience in leading neuro-tech companies. He also previously worked as a researcher at the Duke Center for Cognitive Neuroscience. Stauch is passionate about using brain-training technologies to help people live their best lives with better focus and attention spans.
“Alongside a healthy lifestyle that includes proper sleep, diet, and exercise, we’re excited that NeuroPlus can make a difference for anyone looking to improve their focus and self-control,” said Stauch.
NeuroPlus is not meant to be a treatment for ADHD, nor is it marketed for those purposes.
NeuroPlus Inc. develops brain-sensing technology and training applications to improve cognitive performance in children and adults. Founded by leading neuroscientists and game designers, NeuroPlus is committing to creating programs that improve mental well-being while engaging and entertaining customers. NeuroPlus products are not intended to treat or diagnose any disease.