Digital Technologies & Cognitive Therapies
Kompanion Care's research aims to evaluate the effectiveness of a digital cognitive therapy based on frequent interaction (at least twice a week for more than 4 months) of an intelligent digital conversational agent with patients suffering from dementia with mild to moderate cognitive impairment.
The specificity of the approach lies in leveraging major advances in the last two years in Natural Language Processing (NLP) and more broadly in artificial intelligence to ultimately offer patients a hybrid cognitive therapy based mainly on cognitive stimulation, reminiscence, and musical & artistic cognitive therapies.
General Research Context
Demonstrated Effectiveness of Non-Pharmaceutical Treatments, Particularly Cognitive Stimulation Therapies
Alzheimer's disease affects over one million people in France and over 55 million worldwide, with a rapidly increasing incidence rate, particularly due to population aging. The disease is characterized by cognitive impairments and psychological and behavioral symptoms (neuropsychiatric symptoms).
Non-pharmaceutical therapies based on cognitive stimulation have demonstrated improvements in cognitive functions and patient quality of life, comparable to pharmacological approaches  and . Furthermore, group cognitive stimulation is the only non-pharmacological intervention recommended by the UK's National Institute for Clinical and Health Excellence for people with dementia.
Evidence of the Contribution of Specific Digital Tools for Implementing Cognitive Stimulation Therapies
Previous research and clinical studies have been conducted to quantify the impact of using digital tools (Computer Interactive Reminiscence and Conversation Aid -- CIRCA, Tablet Health Care Platform -- ehcoBUTLER, Memory Motivation -- MeMo, X-Torp, etc.) by dementia patients. These tools aim to encourage patients to communicate, make independent choices, work on long-term memory, minimize working memory disorders, and improve their quality of life and propensity to participate in group activities.
These studies have shown significant improvements:
For patients: evidence of the positive impact of using these tools on the cognitive state, behavior, or quality of life of patients .
For caregivers: increased feeling of competence in providing care  and changing their perception of the patient relationship .
However, using digital tools by individuals with cognitive and behavioral disorders faces challenges in tool handling and motivation to use it.
Significant progress has been made in Natural Language Processing research since 2020, enabling the construction of conversational artificial intelligences producing content indistinguishable from human-written content in certain usage contexts . These recent advances open new research perspectives in developing cognitive stimulation therapies. Kompanion Care's exploration and research continue these works.
Les recherches lancées et futures de Kompanion Care poursuivent principalement les objectifs suivants :
Kompanion Care's ongoing and future research primarily aims to:
Evaluate the extent to which data generated by patient interactions with Livio is representative of the patient's level of cognitive impairment, quality of life, and overall health.
Assess the patient's acceptability of the digital conversational agent, their propensity to want to use the tool spontaneously, the limitations for the patient to use it autonomously, and evaluate how technology could make cognitive stimulation therapies more accessible to a larger number of patients at a competitive cost.
Quantify the clinical impact of regular interactions of the intelligent conversational agent with the patient (cognition, general health level, quality of life). Evaluate to what extent the use of the tool could delay the patient's departure to a specialized center.
Measure the clinical impact of personalized patient care by therapists resulting from continuous monitoring of the patient's cognitive state by the digital tool.
Measure the impacts on the quality of life of caregivers and the quality of their relationship with the patients resulting from the use of the tool.
Launching 2 Research Projects
Kompanion Care has initiated two research projects launched in 2022, drawing from interactions between patients and the artificial intelligence Lilia.
Lilia e-Pro Project
Lilia Therapy Project
In many therapeutic areas (oncology, cardiology, etc.), telemonitoring has demonstrated its positive impact on the overall survival of patients. In the case of Alzheimer's disease, data collection via an e-PRO system (electronic patient-reported), where patient interactions auto-generate follow-up data/markers of cognitive faculties, does not exist to our knowledge. Self-questionnaires enable direct collection of information on disease progression. The analysis of these questionnaires enriches clinical reality with practical reality.
Livio e-Pro research aims to evaluate the extent to which data generated by patient interactions with Livio is representative of the patient's level of cognitive impairment. The correlation between auto-generated patient data and their responses to MMSE, ACE-III, CDR, and NPI evaluation tests (4 evaluation grids predominantly used in the literature) will be evaluated. Due to their frequency, granularity, and coverage of many aspects of cognition, the quantitative data generated by tool use will be studied to enrich dementia state evaluation grids with conversational quantitative measures (e.g., speech duration, frequency of statements) of socialization level, orientation, apathy, and attention.
Group cognitive stimulation therapies have demonstrated their effectiveness in cognitive and patient quality of life . However, numerous studies on various cognitive therapies (reminiscence therapy, music therapy, cognitive training therapy, etc.) provide evidence of their effectiveness on specific aspects of cognition or patient health state, but not always consistently.
Furthermore, it has been demonstrated that patient-centered care interventions reduce agitation, neuropsychiatric symptoms, and depression, and improve quality of life, confirming the interest in developing personalized therapies.
The research focuses on the effectiveness that could represent the hybridization of 4 personalized cognitive therapies: i. cognitive stimulation, ii. reminiscence, iii. art therapy, and iv. music therapy.
Dynamic content selection drawn from different therapies is performed by the artificial intelligence Livio, which seeks to maximize its clinical effectiveness by observing the effects of its interactions with the patient. The artificial intelligence uses self-generated patient evaluations (see the research project section on Livio e-Pro) to assess its impacts and adapt the behavior of its conversational agent.
The quantitative objectives of this therapeutic approach are to measure:
The acceptability of treatment by the patient and their ability to receive it autonomously
The impact of treatment (depending on dosage - duration and frequency of administration) on cognition, quality of life, and patient health state.
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