Digital Dx Start-Up Akili Interactive Creates Video Games That Can Aid Neural Function
Eddie Martucci, co-founder and CEO at Akili Interactive Labs, trained as a “traditional drug discoverer” but the biochemist is finding success in the digital realm.
Akili – a start-up growing out of the PureTech Health group – may pick up where pharmaceuticals have left off in developing new treatments for behavioral health disorders.
“I don’t think it’s fair to say we’ve run out of” pharmaceutical targets, Martucci says. “It’s fair to say the number of new targets is diminishing. The number of effective compounds tend to be relegated to known mechanisms over the last decade or two. It’s certainly getting harder.”
Akili’s interference processing therapy uses video game images – as played on a tablet – to aid the brain’s ability to categorize stimuli and information. It’s lead product, Project: EVO ADHD, is currently being evaluated in the STARS-ADHD study. A pilot study of EVO reported positive results in April.
The company has designs on developing treatments for autism, depression, Alzheimer’s disease, and traumatic brain injury.