Disorders of Consciousness: enhancing the transfer of knowledge and professional skills on evidence-based interventions and validated technology for a better management of patients

Project aim

The  overall  goal  of  DoCMA  is  to  enhance  international  research  on  Disorders  of Consciousness  (DoC)  by  strengthening  the  collaboration  among  project  participants  to leverage the shared scientific and expert know-how in the field.

The partnerships was instrumental in addressing, therefore, the following specific objectives: 

Specific Objective  1:  Consolidating  of  a  joint  international  scientific  and  innovation programme   for   developing   research   projects   on   DoC   diagnosis,   evaluation   and management of patients.

 Specific Objective 2: Establishing a standardized methodology, common approach and data sharing resources to enable data access and research collaborations concerning DoC.

Specific  Objective  3:  Contributing  to  transfer  of  knowledge  and  quality  of  life  of  the individuals,  by  generating  new  services,  technologies  and/or  products  to  respond  to  the society needs concerning DoC. 

In short, this action has increased the scientific competence of the consortium members at the  international  level  in  DoC research  and  clinical  practice,  enhancing  the  transfer  of knowledge   and   professional   skills   on   evidence-based   interventions   and   validated technology for a better management of patients.

Project summary

DoCMA aims to enhance international research on  Disorders  of  Consciousness  (DoC)  by  strengthening  the collaboration  among  project participants to leverage the shared scientific and expert know-how in the field. To  reach  the  mentioned  goal,  the  partnership  is  composed  by  ten  partners  from  different countries in Europe (Austria, Belgium, Germany, Italy, and Spain), covering a wide range of expertise, and bringing together academic and non-academic entities. The consortium brings together   very   complementary   expertise   on   diagnosis   (e.g.   CRS-R)   and   evaluation (behavioral,    neuropsychological,    visual behavioral,    neurophysiological,    EEG    and multimodal  neuroimaging)  and  management  of  patients  (clinical  interventions,  tDCS, EEG based BCI), but also additional enabling disciplines such as data analysis (data quality, data collection, big data analysis) and transversal issues such as ethics, caregivers/family assessment and support, transfer of knowledge and exploitation of results. DoCMA  has  the  following  operational objectives: 

Operational Objective 1: To reinforce existing collaboration and create new joint research opportunities  among  EU  partner organizations,  selected  according  to  their  expertise  and complementarity. This reinforced collaboration will be focused on the development of joint research projects on DoC (diagnosis, prognosis and treatment multi projects).

Operational Objective 2: To leverage on the scientific excellence of the project participants, improving the professional careers of the senior staff of the institutions involved in the project by exchanging knowledge and adopting complementary skills through research stays and additional activities. 

Operational  Objective  3:  To  improve  education  of  pre-doctorate  and  PhD  candidates  and post-docs   at   participating   institutions by   providing   transversal   competences   and international projection to the researchers involved.

Operational Objective 4: To elevate the critical mass and innovation potential of the partners to transfer the knowledge and exploit the results, by generating new services, programmes or technologies to respond to the society demands, but also new research proposals to be at the forefront of the TBI/DoC international scientific arena.

Partnering organisations


Magliacano, A., De Bellis, F., Galvao-Carmona, A., Estraneo, A., & Trojano, L. (2019). Can Salient Stimuli Enhance Responses in Disorders of Consciousness? A Systematic Review. Current neurology and neuroscience reports, 19(12), 98.
Estraneo, A., Fiorenza, S., Magliacano, A., Formisano, R., Mattia, D., Grippo, A., ... & Trojano, L. (2020). Multicenter prospective study on predictors of short-term outcome in disorders of consciousness. Neurology, 95(11), e1488-e1499.

Olaya, J., Noé, E., Navarro, M. D., O’Valle, M., Colomer, C., Moliner, B., ... & Llorens, R. (2020). When, how, and to what extent are individuals with unresponsive wakefulness syndrome able to progress? Functional independence. Brain Sciences, 10(12), 990.

Noé, E., Ferri, J., Olaya, J., Navarro, M. D., O'Valle, M., Colomer, C., Moliner, B., Ippoliti, C., Maza, A., & Llorens, R. (2021). When, How, and to What Extent Are Individuals with Unresponsive Wakefulness Syndrome Able to Progress? Neurobehavioral Progress. Brain sciences, 11(1), 126.

Magliacano, A., Rosenfelder, M., Hieber, N., Bender, A., Estraneo, A., & Trojano, L. (2021). Spontaneous eye blinking as a diagnostic marker in prolonged disorders of consciousness. Scientific reports, 11(1), 1-12.

Carrière, M., Llorens, R., Navarro, M. D., Olaya, J., Ferri, J., & Noé, E. (2022). Behavioral signs of recovery from unresponsive wakefulness syndrome to emergence of minimally conscious state after severe brain injury. Annals of Physical and Rehabilitation Medicine, 65(2), 101534.

Estraneo, A., Magliacano, A., Fiorenza, S., Formisano, R., Grippo, A., Angelakis, E., ... & Trojano, L. (2022). Risk factors for 2‐year mortality in patients with prolonged disorders of consciousness: An international multicentre study. European journal of neurology, 29(2), 390-399.

Annen J, Mertel I, Xu R, Chatelle C, Lesenfants D, Ortner R, Bonin EAC, Guger C, Laureys S, Müller F. Auditory and Somatosensory P3 Are Complementary for the Assessment of Patients with Disorders of Consciousness. Brain Sciences. 2020; 10(10):748.

Key facts

Time frame: 31.08.2022 - 31.01.2023

Funding: Marie Skłodowska-Curie Research and Innovation Staff Exchange (Europe)