Phase I & Phase 2 SBIR Grantee

©2019 BrainLeap Technologies

The BrainLeap Team

Jeff Coleman – CEO & Co-Founder

As an entrepreneur, Jeff enjoys helping companies make the leap from idea to viable business. The big opportunity for BrainLeap Technologies is that schools and families want to improve learning and life skills for attention challenged children, such as those with autism and ADHD. BrainLeap's approach to training attention supports these skills and is both novel and measurable.

Jeff is a graduate of the Wharton School of Business and has worked with many small businesses over the past 20 years – from biotech to software to fashion photography to help them grow, both as an employee and a consultant.

Leanne Chukoskie, PhD - Chief Science Officer & Co-Founder

As humans, we choose where to look 3-5 times every second. Each choice entails an evaluation of the visual scene, decision to shift attention to an area of interest, plan to move the eye the appropriate amount and direction, and the execution of a fast orienting eye movement, called a saccade.

 

Since saccades are the culmination of so much processing, we use them as a sensitive, non-invasive measure of attention and motor planning. Our games are built to train attention by directing and measuring gaze behavior. These gaze and attention shifts involve decisions that demand integration of information over increasingly large areas as game difficulty increases. 

 

Along with Jeanne, Leanne conceptualized the ideas for the attention training games and the gamified assessments, ensuring they incorporate the critical elements necessary to train and accurately measure attention. She continues to provide scientific guidance on development.

Leanne is a co-director of the Research on Autism and Development Lab at UC San Diego, an Assistant Research Scientist in the Institute for Neural Computation, Assistant Science Director of the Temporal Dynamics of Learning Center (TDLC), and the Director of the Power of NeuroGaming (PoNG) Center at the Qualcomm Institute at UC San Diego.

Jeanne Townsend, PhD – Co-Founder & Scientific Advisor

Jeanne provides scientific guidance to the BrainLeap team and oversees data analysis. She is a Professor in the Department of Neurosciences, University of California, San Diego where she directs the Research on Autism and Development Lab.  She is a Neuropsychologist and Cognitive Neuroscientist whose research focus is on the identification of the brain bases of cognition. She is especially interested in attentional processes.

 

Jeanne has studied selective and shifting attention and the underlying brain networks in both typical and atypical development for more than two decades, and has received NIH funding to conduct large studies of attentional function in autism, other developmental disorders and healthy aging. Her previous work has identified deficits in visual attention in autism including delayed attention disengagement, orienting and shifting and a severely restricted attentional field. Most recently, Jeanne and her colleagues have begun to incorporate innovative technology into their research and are developing new approaches to translate their research into effective interventions.

 

The gaze-driven video games to train attention and eye movement were developed with funding from the National Institutes of Mental Health (R21/R33 MH096967).

Joseph Snider, PhD - Chief Technology Officer

Joe is BrainLeap's lead programmer and gets the hardware and software to effectively talk with each other. He keeps abreast of changes in the technology landscape and how BrainLeap can take advantage of them.

 

Joe maintains an appointment at UC San Diego where he directs the Motion Capture and Brain Dynamics laboratory at the Institute for Neural Computation at UC San Diego and co-directs the Power of Neurogaming (PoNG) Center. Joe likes to use the tools of virtual reality, neural imaging, and psychophysics to study how humans deal with the noisy, ever changing, and confusing, environments we evolved in. Through this and his training in computational physics, he has 10+ years of integrating cutting-edge pieces of technology into coherent systems.  

Tonya Murray - Director of Software Engineering

Tonya  leads and manages the development of the attention assessments and attention training games. She works with the founders to scope out user needs and how they can be incorporated into the software suite. Ms. Murray has 15 years of industry experience developing software, managing software development teams, and all phases of project management.

Michael Gramlich - Programmer & Test Engineer

Michael has designed and built one of the BrainLeap games and works on improving usability on an ongoing basis - from improving game play to the user interface. He is also BrainLeap's primary quality assurance tester.

Corey Pritts - Graphic Designer

At BrainLeap, I use my creativity to make video games for children with autism and ADHD. This is meaningful to me because, as a child, I suffered from ADHD and the medication they provided to remedy my condition drained my personality and soul. I'm happy to be part of an alternative way to help children with something that affected me personally. Plus, it incorporates my lifetime love of video games.

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