The University of Massachusetts Amherst
UManage Center

Year One Pilot Projects

Saccade Parameters of Persistent Cancer-Related Fatigue: Biomarker Detection Using Computational Eyeglasses

PI: Rachel K. Walker

Cancer-related fatigue is one of the most common, distressing, and disabling symptoms reported by cancer survivors. This invisible symptom impacts over one-third of all cancer survivors post treatment. Consequently, there is a need for objective measures for monitoring and self-management. The goal of the study is to explore whether saccadic eye movements can serve as an objective measure for Cancer-related fatigue that might aid in self-monitoring, and to investigate whether such eye movements can be accurately detected using newly developed, low-cost, wearable technologies such as computational eyeglasses.

Computational eyeglasses are an emerging form of wearable personalized health monitoring technology that involves eyeglass frames mounted with wireless eye tracking cameras, and computer hardware that can be programmed to both track and analyze changes in eye movement and provide real-time feedback to a computer or smartphone. The project will use a new wireless optical device called iShadow, which can be fabricated for less than $100, to detect errors in saccadic parameters potentially associated with subjective reports of fatigue in breast cancer survivors.

The long-term goal is to translate this technology to community and clinical settings for clients impacted by fatigue or related neuromuscular disorders, for the purposes of self-management.

Research reported in this publication was supported by the National Institute of Nursing Research of the National Institutes of Health under Award Number P20NR016599. The content is solely the responsibility of the authors and does not necessarily represent the official view of the National Institutes of Health.

Rachel Walker

Assistant Professor

Campus Address: 

Skinner Hall 122

Phone: 

413.545.0250

E-Mail: 

r.walker@nursing.umass.edu

 


 

Real-time, Continuous Cortisol Monitoring: Possibilities for Stress Self-Management 

PI: Karen Kalmakis

The aim of the project is to develop a technology to recognize stress, utilizing the well-known relationship between stress and cortisol dysregulation. To this end, Dr. Kalmakis and her team of trained research assistants are developing a wearable, real-time sensor to continuously measure cortisol levels. This will help in testing the relationship between changes in cortisol and symptoms of fatigue, with the long-term goal of creating a valid, reliable, and continuous measurement of real-time cortisol that will provide opportunities to self-mange stress and stress-related symptoms, such as fatigue.

Research reported in this publication was supported by the National Institute of Nursing Research of the National Institutes of Health under Award Number P20NR016599. The content is solely the responsibility of the authors and does not necessarily represent the official view of the National Institutes of Health.

Karen Kalmakis

Karen A. Kalmakis

Associate Professor

Campus Address: 

Skinner Hall 222

Phone: 

413.577.4763

E-Mail: 

kalmakis@nursing.umass.edu