Thursday, 11 March 2010

New Tools for Diabetes

New Tools for Monitoring, Diagnosing Diabetes

A San Diego startup company has hopes of making a major impact on the health care market, with products that offer noninvasive ways to screen for diabetes and perform daily glucose monitoring.

Freedom Meditech Inc. has its headquarters in San Diego and a research facility in Cleveland. The privately financed firm is seeking federal regulatory approval for the development and sale of its ophthalmic diabetes medical devices.

Formed in December 2006, the company is developing products that scan the eye with light to monitor and screen for diabetes. One Freedom Meditech product, a hand-held glucose monitoring device, is aimed at a $10 billion market worldwide.

Painless Glucose Monitoring

“An individual with diabetes does not have to prick their finger to test their blood sugar several times a day,” said President and CEO Craig Misrach.

Freedom Meditech’s device extracts glucose information from the eye.

“It is completely noninvasive,” he said. “We just have light that shines across the eye.’’

The self-administered glucose monitoring tools that are on the market today aren’t always accurate. International standards allow them to have error rates as high as 20 percent. In reality, rate of error can be much higher, said Misrach.

“In our preclinical studies to date, we have demonstrated a less than 8 percent error rate” with the Freedom Meditech device, he said.

“The promise is there for a much better level of accuracy and reliability,” said Dr. Daniel Einhorn, medical director of Scripps Whittier Diabetes Institute. “There are many variables that make current self-glucose monitoring fraught with error.”

Another of the company’s products screens for diabetes and is expected to reach the market ahead of the glucose monitoring device. Designed for use by eye-care professionals, the device has, in clinical studies, demonstrated its ability to detect diabetes without requiring blood to be drawn. The market is estimated at $2 billion worldwide.

“Freedom Meditech aims to revolutionize the way we screen for, diagnose and manage diabetes, through the development of technologies that identify and diagnose patients earlier, improve daily glycemic control, and reduce the economic and personal costs of long-term complications of the disease,” the company said in a prepared statement.

No comments:

Post a Comment