October 2, 2019

Advanced Brain Monitoring Hits the Road with Cannabis Impairment Detection!

CARLSBAD, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Advanced Brain Monitoring, Inc. (ABM), a neuro-diagnostic device company specializing in acquisition and analysis of brain activity (EEG) during wake and sleep, announced $1.5 million awarded by the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) to develop and validate the Cannabis Impairment Detection Application (CIDA), a fieldable, easily-applied system to generate a cannabis-related impairment index using wireless EEG/ECG with tablet-based neuropsychological tests.

Unlike alcohol, measures of cannabis presence in blood, breath, or urine are not valid for quantifying impairment. With the incidence of driving-under-the-influence and post-crash tests positive for cannabis rising sharply in states legalizing cannabis, law enforcement and regulatory agencies need more accurate detection technologies. “The need for quantifying cannabis impairment is increasingly urgent as legalization has outpaced the scientific understanding of the drug’s effects on behavior, health, and safety,” said Chris Berka, ABM CEO and Principal Investigator for the project. “ABM is leveraging prior success in characterizing EEG biomarkers for cannabis impairment.” This project will further validate this approach with controlled-dose cannabis studies and a real-world study of individuals using cannabis products they have purchased and are currently using. To verify impairment, simulator-driving performance will also be acquired. Machine-learning algorithms use EEG/ECG/performance metrics in comparison to a large EEG database to generate the cannabis-impairment index.

Building on successful achievements of a multi-year collaboration with the University of Iowa’s National Advanced Driving Simulator (NADS) involving drug effects on driving and brain activity, the team will conduct controlled cannabis dose-response studies with an alcohol comparison to assess the sensitivity and specificity of the CIDA. “This research fills a critical gap and will help us to understand how cannabis impacts driving performance and brain activity, and to distinguish between drug-present and drug-impaired driving,” said Dr. Timothy Brown, Director of Drug Impaired Driving at the NADS.

A naturalistic study at the University of Colorado will apply CIDA under more realistic conditions involving collection of data from individuals using the cannabis product they normally use. “This research will extend the controlled studies conducted at the University of Iowa to test how the impairment detection app will work in situations that more closely resemble the real world while allowing us to validate against observed changes in driving performance,” said Dr. Ashley Brooks-Russell, Co-Director of the Program for Injury Prevention and Research (PIPER), University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus.

Advanced Brain Monitoring has a 20-year track record of success introducing innovative technologies used by clinicians, researchers, and in clinical trials to interpret brain function related to neurological and psychiatric disorders and to improve sleep quality and enhance performance.

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