The “artificial pancreas” is the holy grail of diabetes technology for type 1 diabetics. It will revolutionize diabetes management, with the ability to combine constant, continuous blood glucose monitoring with insulin delivery to replace the function of the pancreas with technology.
Researchers from the University of Virginia school of medicine is looking to further automate artificial pancreas technology by using a smartphone to control it all. Thanks to a $3.4 million dollar grant from the National Institutes of Health, the team will combine a digital glucose monitor with a digital insulin pump, allowing communication in real time leveraging algorithms and cloud-based computing. This will permit high quality collection of data as well as on-demand telemedicine service.
Hopefully, the device will be able to instantly monitor blood glucose levels and send the data to a remote monitoring site, connecting the user with telemedicine assistance as it is needed. Not only will this prevent annoying finger pricks to test blood sugar levels, but it will provide a complete solution to diabetes management, all the way down to clinical repsonse to adverse events.
Check out the development of the smartphone-operated artificial pancreas in the video below!