The Manchester Smart Neuro-therapies Platform

Through developing the ‘Smart Neuro-therapies App’, the Manchester Smart Neuro-therapies Platform is creating technology allowing patients to record pain symptoms and brain waves associated with those symptoms in the comfort of their own home. This technology will also provide patients with access to two types of non-drug therapy for chronic pain: alpha entrainment and neurofeedback.

Research has found that alpha brain waves are associated with placebo-mediated pain relief. By recording these brain waves using a smart cap placed on the head, the app uses neurofeedback to encourage patients to find ways of increasing the amount of alpha waves in the brain across repeated sessions, thus providing a long-term solution to pain.

For more immediate pain relief, alpha entrainment involves wearing goggles or earplugs which create a rhythmic stimulation in the alpha range. These therapies are designed to enhance the brain’s natural ability to deal with pain and can be accessed at home by patients with minimal technical assistance.

Watch the BBC News North West coverage of the Manchester Smart Neurotherapies Platform