Wearables: the ‘comfy sensor patch’ changes color, a cushion nags on posture

[grow_thumb image=”http://telecareaware.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/10/skin_heart_monitor-1.jpg” thumb_width=”175″ /]Another sensor patch out of the John A. Rogers ‘skunk works’ at the University of Illinois-Urbana/Champaign is designed to be continually worn (presumably in a discreet–not discrete–place) and is capable of monitoring temperature and moistness on the skin’s surface, relating to cardiovascular health and skin care. This ‘epidermal photonic sensor’  has 3,600 0.5mm squared “thermochromic liquid crystals patterned into large-scale, pixelated arrays on thin elastomeric substrates” (meaning a stretchy sensor). Based on this Editor’s reading of the research abstract, color changes with temperature; algorithms and a digital camera shot of the patch then turn temperature data into decipherable health information. What’s not known is how the sensor information transmits. Gizmag, Nature Communications (abstract) Rogers’ previously developed sensors: Biostamp and Reebok Checklight TTA 28 July, the original ‘comfy sensor patch’ 10 April and 8 April.

And watch how you sit. The Darma seat cushion adds 1mm fiberoptic sensors (more…)

That comfy sensor patch gets a bit closer (US/BE)

[grow_thumb image=”http://telecareaware.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/07/Baby_with_Biostamp.png” thumb_width=”180″ /][grow_thumb image=”http://telecareaware.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/07/MC10_Biostamp-small.jpg” thumb_width=”150″ /]Perhaps we should be adding to our sidebar lexicon ‘conformal electronics’. Boston-based wearable health technology developer MC10 is partnering with Brussels-based biopharmaceutical company UCB S.A. to develop MC10’s Biostamp platform for treating those with severe neurological disorders. MC10 developed a seamless, disposable sensing sticker with thin film batteries (right above) which is currently in use in the Reebok Checklight to determine sports-related concussion risk [TTA 16 May, “Brain Games”] and in beta for infant temperature sensing (left above). It seems clear from the announcement today and further remarks (see below) that the objective is not drug delivery, but for patient monitoring and disease management. MC10 commercializes John Rogers’ work in stretchable sensor patches and batteries [TTA 10 April]. The Biostamp does not have FDA approval but the partnership may be a way to fast-track CE approval. MC10 release, Fast Company (also reviews Proteus, Corventis, Given Imaging), Mobihealthnews with comments from Ben Schlatka, MC10 cofounder.

‘Brain Games’ on preventing, diagnosing sub-concussive brain trauma

Tuesday 13 May, presented at NYC MedTech-the NYC Medical Technology Forum, at Troutman Sanders LLP, Chrysler Building, New York City

In a packed (agenda and attendees) two hour evening meeting, three presenters detailed the latest research on the clinical signs of chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE), along with new technologies for detecting it as it happens and diagnosing it plus monitoring recovery: Robert Stern, PhD, professor of neurology and neurosurgery at the Boston University School of Medicine and a leading clinical researcher on CTE (as our long-time readers know) ; Isaiah Kacyvenski, head of the sports segment of electronics designer MC10 which developed the Checklight head impact indicator for Reebok; and Uzma Samadani, MD, PhD, co-founder of Oculogica which presented at ELabNYC a few weeks ago.

Dr. Stern’s presentation reviewed his clinical work with primarily NFL players in how CTE manifests in both behavior patterns and the brain. His focus remains on sub-concussive trauma, the ‘bottom of the iceberg’ in his analogy, and its cumulative, long-term effects.  Repetitive brain trauma–neuronal shearing which is produced by linear, lateral and rotational forces to the head–produce a cascade of brain changes leading to destruction of brain tissues that show as dark patches on post-mortem samples and scans. These differ from Alzheimer’s disease in the abundance of tau protein distributed fairly early in life around the brain’s blood vessels and in the depths of the cortical sulci, where Alzheimer’s signature beta amyloid does not locate. Dr. Stern’s research also incorporates the behavioral changes that precede diagnosis: the emotional ‘short fuse’, the difficulty in memory, accidents, suicide, drastic changes in behavior and impulse control. There are many examples of degeneration and early death among players [TTA 6 Dec 12 which also refers to Dr. Stern’s research published in Brain; also see TTA 5 June 2013 on his German Center presentation which has additional background on his and his team’s research.]

In addition to the work he has done relating to (American) football (he is on the NFL Players Association brain injury committee and his research was instrumental in the PA’s lawsuit against the NFL), he studies other contact sports such as hockey (brain injury clusters (more…)