Speech Analysis in ALS Patients

Speech Analysis in ALS Patients

Quick Info:

Currently Recruiting
Estimated Enrollment:
Treatment Type:
Speech Analysis
Trial Type:
Case-Control, prospective
Barrow Neurological Institute
Primary Investigator:
Contact Information:

Enrollment Criteria:

Forced Ventilation

Breathing Ability

Percent lung function (FVC) or (SVC)

Months Since Onset

Number of months since first
symptoms of ALS
BiPap Allowed

Non-Invasive Ventilation (NIV)

Can PALS use a BiPAP in the trial?
DPS Allowed

Diaphragm Pacer (DPS)

Can PALS use a DPS in the trial?
Edaravone Usage

Edaravone Usage

Can a PALS use edaravone (Radicut/Radicava)
while enrolled in the trial?

Update Notes:

3/13/2019Trial added


Barrow Neurological Institute , Phoenix, 85013

Other Information:

Purpose: The purpose of this study is to find out if changes in speech can signal changes in the ability to think or remember. ALS patients with and without cognitive dysfunction will be followed for one year. Every three months, patients will undergo a series of cognitive and basic clinical outcomes tests. In addition, participants will take home a study-provided tablet on which they will complete weekly speech recording activities.
Eligibility: 21 Years and older, all genders, not accepting healthy volunteers
Details: Cognitive dysfunction is increasingly recognized as a core feature of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS). With appropriate testing, up to 50% of ALS patients will show evidence of frontotemporal dysfunction. Approximately 15% of patients meet formal criteria for frontotemporal dementia (FTD). Certain genetic forms of ALS (e.g., mutations in C9orf72) have even higher incidences of FTD. The presence of cognitive abnormalities is an adverse risk factor for survival, and its presence influences the ability of patients to cooperate in clinical trials. However, screening for frontotemporal abnormalities is frequently not performed in ALS clinics, and tools for diagnosing cognitive dysfunction are either time consuming or insensitive. Additionally, the frequently co-existing dysarthria complicates the assessment and may mask more subtle cognitive deficits. Once identified, ways of following progressive decline are also lacking. In an ongoing study, it has been shown that a sophisticated suite of speech and language analytics, developed by two of the investigators, can identify abnormalities in cognitively normal ALS patients without speech symptoms, and predict important functional changes outside of the speech domain. In this study, investigators will evaluate both speech and language in 50 patients with ALS both with and without symptoms of cognitive decline. This evaluation will be paired with two cognitive screening tools frequently used in ALS clinics, the ALS Cognitive Behavioral Screen (ALS-CBS) and the Montreal Cognitive Assessment (MoCA). The investigators will evaluate the extent to which speech and language deficits precede abnormalities as measured by the above tools and determine whether cognitive change can be accurately followed over 12 months using speech and language measures. It is hypothesized that speech and language measures will accurately and sensitively predict cognitive changes. If so, such measures may be very useful in future studies of potential therapeutic agents for ALS-FTD and other dementias.
News Articles and Summaries:
ALS Forum:
First Published on Clinicaltrials.gov: 3/11/2019
ClinicalTrials.gov ID: NCT03868345
Trial Protocol as Published on Clinicaltrials.gov: