The ever-anticipated Internet Trends deck from Mary Meeker and company heralds a “digital inflection point” for healthcare. Meeker asks if digital health can follow tech’s rapid adoption curves – and suggests that, thanks to exponential growth of medical knowledge and an explosion of health data and data sources, the answer is yes. Mobihealthnews has a typically authoritative rundown, and I’ve blogged a bit more about it here.
FDA is staffing its new digital health unit with 13 hires from tech hotspots, despite a hiring freeze elsewhere in the agency. The unit’s chief says the agency has been trying to apply a legacy regulatory paradigm to new technologies, but that “we need to start with a clean sheet of paper.” Among other things, Bakul Patel envisions “making the approval process more like a TSA security line,” with trusted developers seeing their products sped through a light-touch, fast-track regulatory process.
A Stanford geneticist was tipped off to a Lyme disease infection by the homebrew array of biosensors he’s been using to establish a baseline for his vitals – and may have stumbled on to a noninvasive means of detecting spikes in C-reactive protein that signal inflammation.
Otsuka and Proteus resubmitted their FDA application for a combo of their Abilify schizophrenia treatment with the Proteus ingestible sensor, and an agency decision is expected in Q4. The companies’ initial submission was rejected last year by FDA, which said more evidence was needed for the drug/device combo’s safety and efficacy.
Outcome Health, the digital point-of-care marketing company, is ready for its closeup after winning investment from Alphabet and Goldman Sachs.
Elder care is emerging as a proving ground for IoT technologies. Here’s a great run down of use cases, from wearables for remote monitoring to virtual assistants and emergency response systems for at-home use.
Ready for fully automated drug development? A prototype developed by a Craig Venter-led project (he helmed one of the efforts that cracked the human genome back in the ‘90s) says it has a machine that eats data and spits out drugs and biologics.
Google is adding an ad blocker to its Chrome browser in 2018. Publishers will be able to opt into a program that will protect them from revenue loss owing to third-party ad blockers – in part, by cutting Google in on the action. Holy platform lock-in, Batman!