Blockchain-enabled application for cognitive assessment in dementia

Year of award: 2018


  • Dr Jon Brock

Project summary

We will develop an app that screens memory function in older people who are concerned about declining cognition. It uses a simple word-pairing test that can detect early stages of Alzheimer's disease. It will incorporate three key features that facilitate open science and FAIR data sharing (findability, accessibility, interoperability, and reusability). Data will be archived in secure repositories that allow data sharing between collaborators, clinicians, patients, and caregivers, and allows broader data sharing of anonymised data.

Researchers access the application using a cryptocurrency micropayment. If data are later openly shared, the payment is returned to the researcher. This provides an incentive to share data even if the study is not published. These transactions provide a public, time-stamped record of the data's existence.

As well as clinical and scientific benefits, the application will serve as a working example for a new way of conducting open research.