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Curing Sleep to Treat Neurodegeneration

Poor sleep biology affects brain waste clearance and cognition. Enhancing this biology represents a therapeutic foundation for the treatment and prevention of neurodegeneration.


Applied Cognition is the first to measure and treat the underlying biology to cure sleep, that will result in immediate and measurable improvements in mood and cognition and long-term improvement in neurodegeneration.  

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Poor sleep is a large and growing problem.

1 in 3 American adults, from shift-workers to adults with insomnia and pre-clinical Alzheimer’s, are sleep deprived and therefore at risk of short-term cognitive & mood impairment as well as long-term neurodegeneration.

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No treatments currently exist for the underlying biological causes of poor sleep.

Current solutions treat the symptoms: daytime drowsiness is treated with stimulants and night-time insomnia with sedatives.

Glymphatic function:
the new biology of sleep

The glymphatic system is the waste clearance pathway in the brain that relies on interchange of cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) and interstitial fluid (ISF). 

This recently discovered system plays a critical role in sleep’s cognitive recovery and clearance of neurodegenerative proteins and metabolic waste products.

To cure sleep, we need to measure and enhance  glymphatic function.

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Our Vision & History

We have developed, tested, validated and patented the first device to measure glymphatic function in humans, noninvasively and without interrupting normal sleep.


We have identified the targets that impact glymphatic function.


Using our platform, we will be the first to develop drugs to restore that function to treat sleep-related cognitive impairment and neurodegeneration.


Glymphatic function discovered in mice [1]

Glymphatic dysfunction shown to cause Alzheimer’s and TBI in mice



Glymphatic function shown in humans using intrathecal contrast enhanced MRI

First in-human medical wearable for continuous measurement  of glyumphatic function [2]

Applied Cognition

2021 - 2023

Applied Cognition

2024 +

First in-human drug to enhance glymphatic function in humans 

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Enhancing the biology of sleep is the therapeutic foundation for treating neurodegeneration.

Our unique platform allows us to rapidly determine the

efficacy of drugs and stratify patient populations by

measuring glymphatic function.

Our novel first-in-human approach to measuring glymphatic function uses innovations in microtechnology, material sciences and AI to deliver an unobtrusive, wearable medical device.

With continuous monitoring of this biology we're testing therapeutics to engage it and slow or halt Alzheimer’s disease progression. 



Phase 0 Drug Pipeline

Product Candidates & Phase 0 Status













We're running parallel phase zero in-human clinical trials of drugs to enhance glymphatic function.

Our novel platform’s unique ability to measure glymphatic function allows us to rapidly determine the efficacy of drugs. Our lead assets will be the first in-human drugs proven to enhance glymphatic function to cure sleep and neurodegeneration.


Our Patents & Publications

We have been issued several patents for our glymphatic-function platform. We have also presented our key findings at international conferences on sleep and neurodegeneration.

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Our Founders


Paul Dagum, MD PhD

CEO & Co-founder

Paul is an entrepreneur, physician and computer scientist with a track record of innovation in healthcare, cybersecurity and supply chain over four successful venture-backed companies as founder, CSO, CTO and CEO. He has published 80+ peer-reviewed articles and been awarded 20+ patents in computer science and medicine. Paul has served as Applied Cognition’s CEO since its inception and is the inventor of the company’s investigational device that noninvasively measures glymphatic function in humans.

Prior to Applied Cognition, Paul developed and patented continuous digital biomarkers of central-nervous system function using algorithms from patterns of human-computer smartphone interaction. Paul conceived and led two large multiyear clinical studies to validate the digital biomarkers against neurocognitive gold-standard tests. Paul’s prior company Mindstrong used these sensitive measures of changes in cognition to deliver virtual care to people with serious mental illness.

While leading NSF-funded research and completing medical school and residency at Stanford, Paul made several significant contributions to AI: he developed Dynamic Bayesian Networks that proved to be foundational for a wide range of applications and are still used today in speech recognition, digital forensics, protein sequencing and robotics. During this same period, Paul proved several foundational results in probabilistic reasoning on Bayesian networks, the representational models used in Bayesian deep learning approaches today. In 2008 Paul developed and patented the first high-performance distributed relational data system on a map-reduce architecture (“SQL on Hadoop”) and led its release as the open source project Cloudbase. Today SQL on Hadoop is offered by global database and big data infrastructure companies, and is used widely to solve some of the hardest big-data science problems.

Paul received an M.D. from Stanford University and a Ph.D. in Computer Science and M.Sc. in Physics both from the University of Toronto.


Jake Winebaum

Executive Chairman & Co-founder

Jake is a serial entrepreneur with a decade-long interest in using connected devices and data to improve health and athletic performance and a history of converting his interests into successful companies across a wide range of industries from media to healthcare.

Prior to Applied Cognition, Jake served as Cigna’s Chief Digital Officer after its 2017 acquisition of Brighter, the healthcare company he founded seven years prior. Jake co-founded the internet incubator eCompanies, which launched among others: Boingo Wireless (IPO), JAMDAT Mobile (IPO), and (acquired by RH Donnelly) where Jake served as CEO from 2002 until its sale in 2007.

Prior to that Jake was President of Disney Online, overseeing all of Disney’s internet businesses including,, and Jake started at Disney after it acquired the magazine FamilyFun that he founded with his wife, Cindy.

Jake has been the recipient of several awards in the venture and entrepreneurship space: E&Y’s Technology Entrepreneur of the Year, Time magazine Top 50 Cyber Elite, Wired magazine’s Wired 25, and the Los Angeles Venture Association’s Hall of Fame. He serves on the board of directors of the optometry nonprofit organization Vision to Learn.


Jake received his bachelor’s in Biology from Dartmouth College.

Our Investors


Our Collaborators

Our partners and collaborators feature a highly multidiscplinary team of physician scientists, neuroscientists, computer scientists, material scientists, microtechnology engineers, Alzheimer's neurologists and drug development veterans who come from some of the most highly reputed institutions in the nation, as seen here.​

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