React2 is a specialist software company based in Peebles, developing speech and language therapy rehabilitation tools for both adults and children suffering from brain injury and trauma.
Since 1998, the company has developed a suite of speech and language therapy (SLT) software called React, which has been a leading product for SLT, sold to therapists and private individuals throughout most English speaking countries.
The Business Challenge
React2 recognised the need to investigate, for the first time, the mechanisms underlying stroke patient recovery using computer assisted home therapy. This led to their Managing Director, Dean Turnbull, meeting with Dr Siobhán Jordan of Interface and the Knowledge Links team to investigate how the academic sector could support the development of the young business and to take forward the ideas of React2.
The result has been a successful collaboration with SINAPSE, the Scottish university research pool for brain imaging. The research is being undertaken at the Brain Research Imaging Centre (BRIC), a member of the SINAPSE collaboration, at the Division of Clinical Neurosciences, University of Edinburgh at the Western General Hospital.
The project is investigating the patient recovery through leading edge functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging (fMRI). The academic alliance injected fresh, new approaches to the business and may lead to further developments of the React2 software, which contains a vast number of new exercises in an easy-to-use and up-to-date interface, and is a huge step forward in computer based therapy. The React2 development has combined the development skills of NHS speech and language therapists, as well as specialists from around the world.
PhD student and speech therapist, Anna Jones, who is leading the research, comments: “The results will assess the overall effectiveness of Speech and Language Therapy (SLT) and its long-term benefits. ‘React2’ could dramatically improve SLT for many stroke patients, allowing for more intensive therapy than is currently available.”
React2 sees the potential in e-health as the way forward for patient care.
Managing Director, Dean Turnbull, is thrilled by the collaboration: “This is the sort of research that we as a small company could never fund ourselves, but through Interface and SINAPSE, we are working with the foremost brain imaging specialists in the world. It’s fantastic.”
A 3 year studentship, part of the Knowledge Exchange in Translational Imaging grant funding from Scottish Funding Council to SINPASE, will take the research forward, and the next step of the project will investigate the long term mechanisms underlying stroke patient recovery using computer assisted home therapy and will investigate the patient recovery through leading edge fMRI imaging. This will involve the University of Edinburgh’s Brain Imaging Research Centre at the Western General Hospital’s Division of Clinical Neurosciences. Dean believes that this will result in significant business growth, with increased sales and new employment within the company.
“We are delighted that the collaboration between Propeller Media and University of Edinburgh, facilitated by Interface. Importantly, this relationship highlights how SME’s can benefit from expertise available”. Siobhan Jordan, Director of Interface