Funded Projects

Project # Project Title Research Focus Area Research Program Administering IC(s) Institution(s) Investigator(s) Location(s) Year Awarded
Using Virtual Reality Psychological Therapy to Develop a Non-Opioid Chronic Pain Therapy Cross-Cutting Research Small Business Programs NINR COGNIFISENSE, INC. BAEUERLE, TASSILO; CEKO, MARTA ; WEBSTER, LYNN Sunnyvale, CA 2019
FOA Title: PHS 2017-02 Omnibus Solicitation of the NIH, CDC, and FDA for Small Business Innovation Research Grant Applications (Parent SBIR [R43/R44])
FOA Number: PA-17-302

Chronic pain affects over 100 million Americans, costing society about $600 billion annually. Despite numerous pharmacological and non-pharmacological therapies, over 50% of chronic pain sufferers feel little control over their pain. CognifiSense has developed a patent-pending Virtual Reality Psychological Therapy (VRPT), which is designed to create lasting reduction of chronic pain by addressing the maladaptive learning processes driving pain chronification. VRPT is an experiential learning system, which provides the brain a new set of signals that teaches it that the pain is not as bad as it perceived and that it has greater control over the pain than it perceived. VRPT combines the immersive power and the ability to individualize the therapy of Virtual Reality with well-researched principles of self-distancing, self-efficacy, and extinction to retrain the brain. The goal of this study is to determine the clinical feasibility of VRPT in achieving a lasting reduction of chronic pain, establish brain mechanisms associated with treatment response, and collect comprehensive user feedback to enable further refinement of the current product prototype. CognifiSense's VRPT has the potential to be a significant clinical and business opportunity in the treatment of chronic pain.