The MSReactor computerized cognitive battery correlates with the processing speed test in relapsing-remitting multiple sclerosis

Charmaine Yam, Daniel Merlo, Jim Stankovich, David Darby, Melissa M. Gresle, Tomas Kalincik, Trevor J. Kilpatrick, Jeanette Lechner-Scott, Bruce Taylor, Michael Barnett, Helmut Butzkueven, Anneke van der Walt

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review


Background: Monitoring and screening of cognitive function in the ambulatory setting requires simple, brief cognitive tests that are reproducible. MSReactor (MSR) is a web-based platform that screens psychomotor (processing) speed, attention and working memory using a game-like interface. The Processing Speed Test (PST) is a validated computerized version of the Symbol Digit Modalities test (SDMT) and component of the Multiple Sclerosis Performance Test (MSPT). Objective: To determine the baseline and 6-month predictive correlations between the MSReactor computerised cognitive battery and the PST. Methods: Prospectively enrolled relapsing-remitting multiple sclerosis (RRMS) patients completed the MSR and the PST during 6-monthly clinic visits. Pearson's product-moment coefficients with partial correlation adjustment were calculated between the PST and MSR reaction times for Simple reaction test (SRT), Choice reaction test (CRT) and One- back test (OBK). Results: 379 RRMS patients from six tertiary MS centres in Australia were enrolled. The mean age was 40.4 years (SD 10.3) and median Expanded Disability Status Scale (EDSS) score was 1.5 (IQR 1.0 – 2.0). Most (66%) were on high efficacy disease-modifying treatment. Baseline PST scores correlated with the MSR reaction times: SRT (R=-0.40), CRT (R= -0.44) and OBK (R= -0.47), p <0.05. There was a moderate correlation between the first visit MSR and 6-month PST test for SRT (R= -0.37, p<0.001), CRT (R=-0.44, p < 0.001) and OBK (R= -0.43, p < 0.001) speed. Conclusions: MSR-measured psychomotor speed, attention and working memory at baseline moderately correlates with baseline and 6-month PST; suggesting overlapping cognitive processes are being tested. Six-month test-retest reliability was acceptable for both tests.

Original languageEnglish
Article number102212
Number of pages7
JournalMultiple Sclerosis and Related Disorders
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2020


  • Cognitive computerized battery
  • Cognitive monitoring
  • Multiple sclerosis

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