Cognivue is gearing up for growth, with the company readying to launch its next generation of devices designed to enhance its work in existing markets and lead to opportunities in new ones.
“The next six to 12 months should be very good,” said Tom O’Neill, Cognivue’s president and CEO.
The Victor-based neuroscience technology company specializes in testing cognitive function.
The business was launched as Cerebral Assessment Systems by Charles Duffy M.D. in 2005.
In 2018, the company was purchased by billionaire businessman and Paychex founder Tom Golisano, who changed the name to Cognivue and hired O’Neill.
O’Neill has more than 30 years of leadership experience across the consumer, pharmaceuticals, medical devices, surgical and diagnostics sectors, including time at Ortho Clinical Diagnostics and Bausch + Lomb.
When O’Neill joined the firm there were only a handful of workers. Now Cognivue has over 40 employees, with nearly 30 of them locally based.
Since taking the helm at Cognivue, O’Neill has worked to increase market share of the firm’s patented patient assessment systems, and has reconfigured them, making the devices smaller and portable, for increased ease of use.
The portable devices were set to be launched in 2020, when the COVID-19 pandemic hit, and the company had to alter its plans. In response, Cognivue quickly pivoted, holding webinars to educate health professionals on the new devices, O’Neill said.
The next step is using the data Cognivue collected from a diverse focus group last year to upgrade its diagnostic assessment tools which, in turn, can help with screening patients, he explained.
The company is preparing to bring its next generation of devices to market in early 2024, O’Neill said.
Cognivue developed the world’s first FDA-cleared computerized test of cognitive function designed to give health care providers a useful tool for cognitive evaluation and diagnosis.
The technology objectively, quantitatively and reliably identifies changes in cognitive function that could indicate an impairment that patients can then treat or manage.
The digital technology replaces older methods of studying cognitive function, which were traditionally done through written tests, some more than 40-years-old, O’Neill said.
The Cognivue systems improve the ability of health care providers to implement a personalized assessment of cognitive function in a wide variety of care settings. There are models for use in doctor’s offices and non-physician settings.
Cognivue systems are being used locally and across the country, as well as in Canada and the United Kingdom, by a range of healthcare providers including primary care doctors, neurologists, audiologists and optometrists. The systems can also be found at pharmacies.
With many providers today pressed for time, the Cognivue system offers an efficient, yet patient friendly method of testing, that is lightweight and portable, he said.
The goal is to decrease the risk for cognitive decline while optimizing cognitive health, O’Neill said.
The business is also focusing on partnerships.
Cognivue is working with several states, including New York, on a roadside assessment tool that would help law enforcement determine if an individual is impaired from marijuana or other drugs.
O’Neill anticipates a pilot program for that will be underway early next year.
In addition, Cognivue is working with the Kutcher Clinic for Sports Neurology in Michigan on a first-of-its-kind large-scale study that aims to evaluate and refine how concussions are identified and treated using evidence-based diagnostic inputs.
Most recently, Cognivue announced a strategic partnership with New Jersey-based DigiCARE Realized aimed at improving routine brain care across health care systems, focusing on earlier detection of Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias.
DigiCARE Realized’s artificial intelligence technology analyzes electronic health records network-wide, detecting patients with undiagnosed, early-stage Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias.
The announcement from the companies last month comes following the news of the drug Lequembi receiving FDA approval for the use in people with early Alzheimer’s disease; a move expected to result in an increased number of individuals being screened for the disease.
O’Neill said the partnership will offer health systems a comprehensive method to bring better brain health to their communities, offering a way to detect and treat Alzheimer’s disease and other cognitive illnesses earlier.
He noted that Cognivue’s recent efforts are focused on moving the company forward.
“These steps position Cognivue for future innovation,” O’Neill said.
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