A McGill University study has examined the potential usefulness of tracking eye movements as a biomarker of physical and cognitive dysfunction in patients with multiple sclerosis (de Villers-Sidani et al. Front Neurol 2023;14:1243594).
The study used a novel eye-tracking technology that uses the camera on an iPad Pro. The interim report included data for 60 patients with RRMS or SPMS. Subjects performed four oculomotor tasks to evaluate fixation, pro- and anti-saccade, and smooth pursuit, from which additional parameters were extracted. Results were compared to clinical outcomes assessed with conventional tools (EDSS, BICAMS, MSFC, SDMT).
Overall, 10 eye-movement parameters were correlated with the MSFC, nine were correlated with the EDSS and SDMT, and five were correlated with BICAMS. Based on these interim results, the authors noted that a larger sample size could enable an accurate estimation of disease severity based on eye-movement tracking alone across the full range of EDSS scores.
Dr. Paul S. Giacomini, Director, MS Clinic, Montreal Neurological Institute, Montreal, discusses his recent paper, Oculomotor analysis to assess brain health: preliminary findings from a longitudinal study of multiple sclerosis using novel tablet-based eye-tracking software (de Villers-Sidani et al. Front Neurol 2023;14:1243594).