A Pittsburgh-based start-up company, Rehat LLC (dba NOCTEM; www.noctemhealth.com),
was selected for a competitive $1.33M award by Medical Technology
Consortium Enterprise (MTEC) to pilot a novel telehealth platform
treating the unmet sleep healthcare needs of Service Members.
For this project, the Noctem team is joined by colleagues at the
University of Pittsburgh and experts in sleep research and sleep
specialists led by Dr. Rachel Markwald, Principal Investigator at the
Naval Health Research Center Sleep and Fatigue Research Laboratory
(NHRC). NHRC received $660K to lead a large implementation-effectiveness
trial using the Noctem platform.
The two-year study will evaluate new smartphone- and web-based
technology to offer military service members and their providers
convenient access to proven therapies for insomnia, nightmares, and
other sleep disturbances.
The diagnosis of sleep disorders in the military has increased 10-fold
over the past decade. Today over 40% of servicemen and women report
insomnia and other sleep disorders, which in turn, compromise the US
Armed Forces’ fitness and readiness.
Although traditional in-person sleep therapies are effective, these
treatments are not widely available due to a limited number of trained
providers, costs, and burdensome formats for patients and providers.
To overcome these challenges and put sleep treatments that work in the
hands of servicemembers, veterans, and healthcare providers, Dr. Anne
Germain, CEO and co-founder of Noctem LLC, and colleagues at the
University of Pittsburgh, created a telehealth sleep solution that makes
it easy for patients to access state-of-the-art sleep treatments, and
for providers to deliver these treatments with high levels of accuracy
In a preliminary study with post-9/11 servicemembers and veterans,
Germain and colleagues showed that delivering sleep interventions via
the telehealth platform yielded similar improvements in sleep, insomnia,
and daytime symptoms of depression and anxiety as those observed
following the traditional intervention format, including more costly and
lengthy office visits.
Germain is an internationally renowned sleep expert who has been focused
on sleep in the military since 2005, when she founded the Military Sleep
Tactics & Resilience Research Team at the University of Pittsburgh. She
is currently on leave from the University to dedicate 100% of her effort
to addressing unmet sleep healthcare needs with scalable telehealth
“We are honored and excited to have this opportunity to deploy
behavioral sleep interventions into the hands of providers and
patients,” said Germain. “Conquering sleep is key for optimal health,
fitness, and performance, in both military personnel and civilians.”
The MTEC award will support deployment and evaluation of the digital
platform for delivery of effective behavioral sleep treatments within
the US military healthcare system and inform future efforts in civilian
“MTEC is honored to support the Noctem team, led by Dr. Anne Germain, to
provide a scalable, effective platform for behavioral sleep treatment to
benefit U.S. Service members and the broader civilian population,”
stated Dr. Lauren Palestrini, MTEC Director of Research Programs.
MTEC is a biomedical technology consortium collaborating with multiple
government agencies under a 10-year renewable Other Transaction
Agreement with the U.S. Army Medical Research and Materiel Command. The
consortium focuses on the development of medical solutions that protect
and heal those that serve. To find out more about MTEC, visit mtec-sc.org.
About NOCTEM (www.noctemhealth.com)
NOCTEM is a telehealth company that reimagines the delivery of
evidence-based sleep care. We leverage technology to provide scalable,
strategic, cost-efficient, and personalized digital sleep solutions. Our
vision is to optimize health and performance through restorative sleep.
Every night. Carpe Noctem!
Noctem is a portfolio company of LifeX Labs, a life science startup
accelerator launched by the University of Pittsburgh in 2018 with a
mission to translate the region’s world-class research into breakthrough
commercial products. To find out more about LifeX Labs, visit https://www.lifexventures.com/lifex-labs.