Apple has a secret team of over 30 biomedical engineers working on developing sensors that non-invasively and continuously monitor blood sugar levels. CNBC reports that the efforts have been going on for over five years and that the tech giant is looking at finding ways to navigate regulatory pathways.
Diabetes is a lifelong condition that causes a person’s blood sugar level to become too high. It is one of the fastest growing health threats of our times and an urgent public health issue. According to US government statistics, some 9.3% of Americans or 29.1 million people are diagnosed with the condition. A further 8.1 million people are undiagnosed. Worldwide, an estimated 371 million people have the disease.
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Non-invasive glucose monitoring is considered to be the holy grail of diabetes treatment. Many companies have tried and failed and diabetes patients still have no accurate alternatives to tracking glucose by piercing the skin. Sources close to the project told CNBC that Apple has made some significant headway and has been conducting feasibility trials at various clinical sites.
While details are sparse, Apple is reportedly developing sensors capable of measuring indications of glucose in the blood stream through a user’s skin. One of the people said that Apple is developing optical sensors, which involves shining a light through the skin to measure indications of glucose.
If Apple is able to succeed where others have failed, it would turn the Apple Watch into a ‘must have’ device for many. A sensor capable of detecting glucose levels without drawing blood would spur new medical research and allow for a host of new health and wellness insights from your wrist.
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