Project: A Multimodal Approach to Personalized Tracking of Evolving State-Of-Consciousness in Brain-Injured Patients

Acronym PerBrain (Reference Number: ERAPERMED2019-101)
Duration 01/04/2020 - 31/03/2023
Project Topic Improved treatment of severe brain injuries has resulted in increased survival rates. While some of these patients regain consciousness after a transient state of coma, others may develop a disorder of consciousness (DoC). Diagnosis of DoC currently relies on standardized behavioral assessment. The importance of accuracy in such diagnosis cannot be overstated, as it guides critical decisions on treatment (including pain management), and could underlie end-of-life decisions. Despite this importance, current behavioral diagnosis often fails, if because of the major sensory and motor deficits associated with DoC, or because of the heterogeneous etiology and pathophysiology associated with the condition. Finally, the need for accurate diagnosis and prognosis transcends the needs of the patients alone: caregiving of these patients is very stressful, principally for the large uncertainty associated with them. Thus, more accurate diagnosis and prognosis provides major relief for caregivers, and paradoxically, even if the news is not "good". For all these reasons it is critical to developing personalized diagnosis and prognosis prediction tools that permit a stratified analysis at the single-patient level. The PerBrain Project will benefit from the multidisciplinary partners’ expertise, and the unique opportunity to perform longitudinal assessments in four clinical sites through both established and novel electrophysiological, neuroimaging and physiological techniques. Based on the collected data, we will develop a multimodal personalized diagnostic tool for DoC patients using state-of-the-art computational tools, such as machine learning, in order to better determine the current state (diagnosis) and future outcome (prognosis). The overall aim of this project will provide for a better understanding of the pathophysiological mechanisms in DoC, which will, in turn, allow personalized rehabilitation strategies, and improved single-patient predictions of state and prognosis.
Network ERA PerMed
Call 2nd Joint Transnational Call for Proposals (2019)

Project partner

Number Name Role Country
1 Institut du Cerveau et de la Moelle épinière Coordinator France
2 University of Milan Partner Italy
3 Fondazione Don Carlo Gnocchi Santa Maria Nascente, IRCCS Partner Italy
4 Weizmann Institute Partner Israel
5 University Hospital of the Ludwig-Maximilians-University of Munich Partner Germany