Joint venture to develop painless diabetes monitoring with NFC

A phone shows a patient's glucose level
GOOD SENSE: Diabetic patients will be able to read their glucose levels with an NFC phone

A new joint venture that includes the US-based Mayo Clinic and Germany’s Fraunhofer Institute is developing an NFC-based diabetes monitoring system to replace the traditional glucometers that are currently used to monitor patients’ blood sugar levels. The system will also use phones to control insulin delivery, using disposable NFC insulin delivery systems.

Mobile healthcare specialist Gentag — a long-time supporter of NFC technology — and glucose monitoring solutions provider NovioSense are also part of the venture.

The solution will incorporate implantable sensors, skin patches, eye sensors and insulin delivery systems that can all be controlled using an NFC mobile device. Gentag first demonstrated its platform and began licensing it to a number of leading healthcare solution providers in January 2011 as a way of enabling self-testing for pregnancy, fertility, pathogens, Aids, drugs, allergens and certain types of cancers.

The joint venture has been formed alongside a “large global partner interested in leading the next generation of diabetes monitoring,” according to Gentag.

“The joint venture [solution] is covered by 75 issued patents worldwide and is significantly lower cost than current type 2 diabetes solutions,” Gentag says. “Development will be carried out simultaneously on both sides of the Atlantic by NovioSense and Gentag, together with the diabetes teams from Mayo Clinic and the sensor and NFC teams of Fraunhofer IMS.”

“Our patented technology allows us to make wireless sensors that are batteryless, disposable, painless and use cell phones or other NFC devices as glucometers,” says Gentag CEO Dr John Peeters. “Furthermore, we can use the cell phones as controllers for insulin delivery, including disposable NFC insulin delivery systems.”

“By creating a device powered only by the NFC antennas found in most modern smartphones and combining this with a pain-free sensor platform, we can cut the cost and burden of glucose monitoring dramatically,” adds NovioSense CEO Dr Christopher Wilson. “We want to make pain free glucose monitoring available to everyone.”