AsianScientist (Nov. 5, 2014) – Singapore’s Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR) Institute of Microelectronics (IME) and local biotechnology firm Singapore Biomicro Pte Ltd are collaborating to develop a new wireless blood glucose monitoring device that will dramatically improve the lives of those afflicted with diabetes.
Blood glucose monitoring is an integral part of successful diabetes management to prevent or delay the onset of long-term diabetes-associated complications such as heart disease, kidney failure and nerve damage. However, to monitor their blood glucose levels, diabetics currently have to contend with the hassle and discomfort of daily finger-prick blood tests.
The A*STAR-Biomicro partnership aims to eliminate this routine by developing an implantable blood glucose monitoring device. Once surgically implanted into the patient, it will automatically monitor and transmit readings wirelessly to an external reader.
This collaboration will allow Singapore Biomicro to tap on IME’s expertise in integrated circuits, sensor interfaces, wireless charging and connectivity technologies to develop the device.
Specifically, IME’s capabilities are integral to the development of an application-specific integrated circuit (ASIC) or microchip that will enable ultra-low power signal acquisition and highly-efficient wireless data transmission.
IME will also work with Singapore Biomicro on the integration of the ASIC with glucose sensors and miniaturized antennas to build a functional prototype of the implantable wireless blood glucose sensor device.
According to statistics from the Diabetic Society of Singapore, one in nine Singaporeans aged 18 to 69 are afflicted with diabetes, which translates to approximately 11.3 percent of the local population, or more than 400,000 people.
“Technology advancements, coupled with increasing adoption of wireless healthcare devices are optimizing patient care. It is encouraging to see Singapore companies capitalizing on this market potential and to improve the lives of diabetics globally,” said Prof. Kwong Dim-Lee, Executive Director of IME.
“This collaboration between Singapore Biomicro and IME will create a world-class diabetes monitoring system. We are confident that the partnership will lead to significant breakthroughs in device development for blood glucose monitoring that will have an important impact on healthcare service around the world,” said Mdm Long Qiongzhen, Chairman of Singapore Biomicro.
Source: A*STAR; Photo: Alisha Vargas/Flickr/CC.
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