Mclean Hospital
Technology in Psychiatry

McLean Institute for Technology in Psychiatry

Below are some examples of current projects taking place at or in collaboration with the McLean Institute for Technology in Psychiatry (ITP). In each project, the goal is to improve our ability to understand or improve mental health and create systems that meet patients where they are through personalized, digital solutions that can be made widely available.

Smartphone-Based Treatment Interventions

Beiwe is the world’s first fully encrypted smartphone platform for continuous monitoring of patients with severe mental illness coupled to world class machine classifiers. The goal of Beiwe is to build a clinical warning system capable of detecting and adapting to complex changes in behavior, while they are happening or even before. This will enable clinicians to help identify and support patients during the times when they need it most.

Lead investigators: JP Onnela, Justin T. Baker, MD, PhD

Cognitive Assessment in the Wild

TestMyBrain is a web-based cognitive assessment platform that takes advantage of the strong public interest in the mind and brain as an engine for scientific advancement. Since 2008, the TestMyBrain project has tested almost 2 million people across over 50 web-based tasks specifically designed to engage the interest of research participants and provide high-quality research data. Recently, the NIMH has contracted with McLean Hospital and McLean personnel associated with the TestMyBrain project to develop recommendations for an RDoC field test battery that can be used to measure clinically relevant dimensions of behavior in a field test setting, outside of the traditional laboratory or clinic. The investigators are humbled to have this opportunity to collaborate with experts in clinical and basic sciences to develop reliable and valid measures of these fundamental components of mental health disorders.

Lead investigator: Laura Germine, PhD

Digital Phenotyping in Mental Illness

The Emerald sensor uses wireless radio signals to determine the location and motion of a person in their living environment, thus collecting a complex data analysis of a patient. As a passive, wall-mounted sensor, Emerald does not require patients to change their behavior or interact with wearable technologies. The goal is to be able to use this technology to help seniors with mental health conditions by providing clinicians with day-to-day information about how people live in their environment.

Lead investigators: Ipsit Vahia, MD, Dina Katabi, PhD

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The Last Mile Problem in Psychiatry

The MultiSense project uses video to capture naturalistic face-to-face clinical interviews. We then use these videos in combination with machine learning to improve the efficiency and robustness of mental health assessments through automatic sensing. The goal of the MultiSense project is to improve patient care and enable high-throughput behavioral characterizations for conventional clinical trials.

Lead investigators: Justin T. Baker, MD, PhD, Elizabeth Liebson, MD, Joseph Stoklosa, MD, Louis-Philippe Morency

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