Client Profile: Pat Andres, Senior Research Scientist at Massachusetts General Hospital

For information about acquiring an ATLIS device, please contact Patricia Andres, DPT, MS at

When the innovator came to TREAT, she had the intention of redesigning a device that measures the decline of strength in people living with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, or ALS. Accurate Test of Limb Isometric Strength (ATLIS) isometric strength in 12 muscle groups. Earlier validation studies demonstrated early indication of accurately predicting the decline of muscle strength.

The five ATLIS units in use at the time were heavy, bulky, expensive, and had some underlying safety issues. The redesign addressed these issues, making it more attractive to potential licensors. A smarter product combined with the published research may allow ATLIS to become the gold standard in measurement for drug research and other interventions to treat ALS.

With TREAT assistance, a market validation assessment revealed a small, but not insignificant market for the ATLIS. This information was used to guide design and manufacturing decisions.

TREAT industrial design and engineering resources assisted with a Product Requirements Definition and presented a number of concepts that were narrowed down based on those design criteria. A final design was chosen, detailed engineering drawings were provided, and a prototype for the next generation ATLIS device was created.

The complete redesign effort resulted in a less expensive, safer, lighter weight, and modular device that could be transported and assembled by one person without compromising the already proven results of ATLIS.

“In my 30 years in clinical research, working with TREAT was by far the best experience I have had in completing a grant. The efficiency of the group at TREAT was extraordinary. With their help and encouragement, all milestones were met on time and within budget. TREAT was able to cut through the red tape of clinical research and guide me through the research process in an efficient, professional manner. The design engineers were very talented, insightful and task oriented. It was a pleasure to work with them. I owe the continued success of this product to and expertise provided by TREAT.”