Citizen Science: Stall Catchers

Without the help of the crowd, this process could take decades.

Stall Catchers is an online activity that anyone can do that will help to speed up Alzheimer’s disease research at Cornell University. No experience is necessary! Presented as a game, you will look at movies from the brains of mice and try to identify vessels as flowing or stalled.

Researchers recently discovered that stalls (clogged blood vessels in the brain) are responsible for blood flow reduction in mice with Alzheimer’s. By reducing the number of stalls, the lab was able to restore memory and reduce other cognitive symptoms in mice.

But to fully understand how stalls are contributing to Alzheimer’s and discover potential treatments, scientists need to get through lots of data. They need your keen eyes for that – even the most powerful computer technologies can’t do that accurately enough yet. Anyone can be a catcher!

Watch this introductory tutorial:

  • Check out the “How to” section in the main menu if you need help at any time.
  • One helpful way the process has been described: you’re looking for black areas that never disappear among the flow of white.
  • Don’t worry about making mistakes! Each vessel will be seen by other citizen scientists so we can figure out the right answers together.
You’ll see your “score” and watch your level go up as you view more films!

Learn more about the science behind Stall Catchers:

View the Stall Catchers FAQ for more information.

Consider joining our team: Scotch Plains Library!

Learn how to join a team here!

Top team efforts are shown on the leaderboard.

Let’s see how much our community can contribute towards finding a treatment for Alzheimer’s!