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Rockley Photonics progresses noninvasive biomarker monitoring

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Rockley Photonics, a health technology company, has announced progress towards noninvasive glucose sensing using its proprietary silicon photonics platform. The technology platform aims to enable short-wave infrared (SWIR) spectroscopy to be translated to a miniaturised, wearable form factor capable of making noninvasive biomarker measurements in humans. Through a combination of benchtop sensor verification with both simulated human skin and during preliminary human studies, Rockley has engineered the SWIR platform to measure glucose.

The company said that recent measurements performed in a benchtop version with a complex simulated tissue model showed that its PIC technology is capable of measuring glucose with an accuracy of 5mg/dL. Additionally, Rockley reported that results of an initial IRB-approved study involving 40 Type I and Type II diabetic subjects over a 10-week period had demonstrated significant progress towards the development of a noninvasive wearable glucose monitor. The company added that the study was conducted with attention to avoid spurious correlations and allowed for critical technology performance characteristics to be determined.

Mark A. Arnold, Ph.D. the Edwin B. Green Chair in Laser Chemistry, professor of chemistry and director of the Center for Biocatalysis and Bioprocessing (CBB) at the University of Iowa and leading contributor to Rockley’s scientific advisory board, spoke about the quality of the work at Rockley. “Rockley has been open with the details of their data and subsequent analysis and invited my critique of all aspects of their work. Rockley has assembled a world class team around the system design, quantitative algorithm development, and clinical experimental design.”

Speaking about the progress of the silicon photonics platform, Dr. Mark Arnold said, “Rockley has demonstrated that its technology can enable a sensor that has the requisite radiant powers, wavelength range, and optical resolution needed to make these difficult measurements in real-world products.”

Commenting on the capability of the novel sensing technology, Dr. Andrew Rickman, CEO and Chairman, spoke to the results of the studies and Rockley’s future implementation in wearables. “We are excited that our unique PIC technology is enabling us to noninvasively and accurately measure unique biomarkers in a very small form factor.” He continued, “The results confirm that Rockley’s integrated silicon photonic technology and novel processing of the SWIR signal offers a unique opportunity to realize the goal of a wearable, noninvasive glucose sensor for a host of medical applications.”

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