NOVARTIS, GOOGLE TO DEVELOP ‘SMART’ CONTACT LENS

D1B7D1CC-C95A-40D4-A57F-6064D37B015D_w640_r1_s_cx0_cy3_cw0Watch the video: Newsy

 

Swiss drugmaker Novartis has struck an agreement with Google to develop “smart” contact lenses that would help diabetics to track their blood glucose levels or restore the eye’s ability to focus.

The device for diabetics would measure glucose in tear fluid and send the data wirelessly to a mobile device, Novartis said. The technology is potentially life-changing for many diabetics, who prick their fingers as many as 10 times daily to check their body’s production of the sugar.

Success would allow Novartis to compete in a global blood-sugar tracking market that is expected to be worth more than $12 billion by 2017, according to research firm GlobalData. Diabetes afflicts an estimated 382 million people worldwide.

Many people with Type 1 diabetes and some with Type 2 diabetes monitor their blood glucose level to help to manage their condition and reduce the risk of health complications such as amputation and blindness.

Simon O’Neill, director of health intelligence at the charity Diabetes UK, said the field would “welcome any investment in new technology that might one day have the potential to make this easier for people or to offer them more choice”.

He added, however, that without knowing more about this technology “we have no idea how likely it is to develop into something that is routinely available or how long this might take to happen”.

The second element of the Google agreement is centered on presbyopia, in which aging eyes have trouble focusing on close objects. Novartis hopes the lens technology will help to restore the eye’s ability to focus, almost like the autofocus on a camera.

Non-invasive sensors, microchips and other miniaturized electronics would be embedded into the contact lenses.

Under the deal, Novartis’s Alcon eyecare unit will further develop and commercialize the lens technologies designed by Google, the American company’s development team.

For the full article: VOA News

 

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s