Precision medicine boosted by TKI grant to N=You center

21 September 2023

With 750 kEUR funding from TKI, Hilgo Bruining and Klaus Linkenkaer-Hansen have teamed up with the company Clouds of Care in a public-private partnership to accelerate research and implementation of EEG analysis for precision medicine in patients with epilepsy or children with a neurodevelopmental disorder like autism.

The balance between excitatory (E) and inhibitory (I) signaling is crucial for proper brain development and functioning. Indeed, alterations in E/I balance supposedly underlie clinical manifestations of neurodevelopmental disorders ranging from behavioral disturbances to seizures. Many existing and new pharmacological interventions target elements of E/I-balance regulation; however, lack of technology to track changes in E/I ratio that is clinically insightful is limiting their implementation. In the BRAINinBALANCE public-private partnership between the N=You Neurodevelopmental Precision Center at Amsterdam UMC and MedTech company Clouds of Care, we aim to solve this problem.

Specifically, based on our patent-pending algorithm to quantify network-level E/I ratio directly from EEG signals (Bruining et al., 2020), we will build a standardized EEG analysis workflow for individual-subject monitoring of E/I regulation through pharmacological interventions. This includes different anti-epileptic drugs, which is the focus area of Epilog, a brand of Clouds of Care, and bumetanide treatment of children with autism spectrum disorder that have participated in a large EEG-assisted trial at the N = You Neurodevelopmental Precision Center. When successful, the knowledge and methods could be applied to other brain disorders currently investigated for E/I dysregulation, such as Alzheimer’s disease, Schizophrenia, and depression.

Bruining H, Hardstone R, Juarez-Martinez E, Sprengers J, Avramiea A-E, Simpraga S, Houtman SJ, Poil S-S, Dallares E, Palva S, Oranje B, Palva JM, Mansvelder HD, Linkenkaer-Hansen K. Measurement of excitation/inhibition ratio in autism spectrum disorder using critical brain dynamics. Scientific Reports; 1–15, 2020.