Google Inc. announced on Monday that it has teamed up with French pharmaceutical company Sanofi SA to join in on the common goal of combining science and technology to develop new ways to manage and treat diabetes.
Google's Life Sciences team will collaborate with Sanofi to improve the care of the 382 million people worldwide who suffer from the chronic disease by developing new tools and and enhancing the tools already available for patients when it comes to blood glucose monitoring, medication regime and sensor devices for patients.
"As a global leader in diabetes care, we have both an obligation and a commitment to provide integrated solutions for people living with diabetes, "Olivier Brandicourt, M.D., Sanofi CEO, said in a press release. "This initiative combines Sanofi's strength and knowledge in diabetes with Google's leadership in technology and analytics to create a first-of-its-kind initiative with the potential to transform diabetes care."
The U.S. Internet company's Life Sciences team will use its expertise in analytics and electronics to develop small medical devices that will continuously collect patients' data, along with software that will analyze and learn from the information gathered to find new treatment options to manage and treat the condition in real-time.
Using Sanofi's previous experience with making insulin, Google will develop a small, cheap and disposable device that can be worn on the skin like a Band-Aid to track insulin levels via the patient's smartphone. The device could then automatically suggest or adjust the amount of insulin needed. This could allow physicians to see if their patient has poor management over the disease and prevent further complications like stroke, heart attack or cancer.
"With new technologies emerging to provide a more continuous and real-time view of a patient's health, we can see the promise for more proactive and effective ways to control diabetes," said Andy Conrad, CEO of the Life Sciences team at Google. "Together with Sanofi, we believe diabetes management can be simpler and more convenient, which may help patients achieve an improved quality of life."
Sanofi will also develop a Bluetooth-enabled pen that would allow doctors to monitor how much insulin their patients are using and how often the hormone is being administered.
Determined to be a company that offers more than just a search engine, Google's Life Science division launched two years ago and will now be stand-alone unit as part of Google's Alphabet Inc. The division has previously partnered with companies like Biogen Inc., Dexcom Inc. and Novartis AG — with which it most notably developed a glucose-monitoring contact lens.
According to the International Diabetes Federation, it's expected that the number of people affected with diabetes will rise to 592 million people globally by 2035.
Both companies declined to comment on how much they are each investing as part of the new collaboration.
Via: Wall Street Journal
Photo: Kristina Alexanderson | Flickr