Sensor-Enabled Ambulatory Monitoring of Physical Activity



Parkinson's disease (PD) affects 30 million people worldwide and is the second commonest neurodegenerative disorder. Symptoms include tremors, muscle rigidity, dropping posture, walking difficulty, loss of facial expressivity, loss of vocal projection. Experts in the field state that through biomarkers "there is no doubt that early PD detection will pave the way for major advances in disease-modifying therapies.."Biomarkers (which include clinical, biochemical, genetic, proteomic, or neuroimaging) may help early detection, differentiation of atypical Parkinson's and earlier symptom control. Clinical biomarkers, such as motor function are particularly attractive as they enable early monitoring, are non-invasive and may be applied to a number of clinical conditions affecting a similar demographic. We are developing a novel multi-sensory wearable device incorporating multiple sensors in order to detect physical activity, gait, posture, voice and facial EMG. In addition to aiding at-home monitoring and assessment, several studies have shown that gait performance in PD can be improved by applying continuous external rhythmic auditory or visual cues.

Visual Computing Group @ University of Portsmouth