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On Tech & Vision With Dr. Cal Roberts


Apr 26, 2024

This podcast is about big ideas on how technology is making life better for people with vision loss.

This episode is about how biosensor technology is revolutionizing the field of diagnostic and preventive medicine. Biosensors can take many forms — wearable, implantable, and even ingestible. And they can serve many different functions as well, most notably when it comes to detecting the various pressure levels in our bodies.

This episode features interviews with several luminaries working with biosensors. One of them is Doug Adams, a revolutionary entrepreneur who became inspired to create a biosensor that can assist in the treatment of glaucoma patients, initially focusing on a sensor for intraocular pressure. More recently, Doug founded a company called QURA, whose current efforts are focused on a biosensor that detects blood pressure.

To elaborate on QURA’s initiatives, this episode also includes insights from its Chief Business Officer, David Hendren. He and Dr. Cal discuss the current state of biosensor technology, the benefits of implantable biosensors, and how they work.

Finally, this episode includes a conversation with Max Ostermeier, co-founder and General Manager of Implandata Ophthalmic Products. Max was previously interviewed by Dr. Cal for the episode “Innovations in Intraocular Pressure and Closed Loop Drug Delivery Systems.” This time, Max joins Dr. Cal to discuss the possibilities of biosensor technology and his company’s Eyemate system — which includes biosensor technology for glaucoma patients.

All three guests also offer their thoughts on the future of biosensors and their endless possibilities. While it may seem like science fiction, it truly is science reality!

 

The Big Takeaways

  • What Biosensors Do: Currently, biosensors primarily sense the various pressures in the human body. QURA’s current sensor detects blood pressure and assists with hypertension. Meanwhile, Implandata’s Eyemate technology serves glaucoma patients by gathering data on intraocular pressure.
  • The Rapid Shrinking of Biosensors: When Doug Adams first started working on biosensors, the model he saw was the size of a microwave. Now, it’s shrunk to the size of a grain of rice! By making biosensors smaller, they are easier to implant and place in different spots within the body. And by doing so, they can gather more and more data.
  • The Benefits of AI: One drawback of gathering so much data is that it can sometimes be hard to analyze it. However, improvements in AI technology are making it easier to sort through all that data, giving doctors and patients valuable information for medical diagnostics and treatments.
  • The Future of Biosensors: As implantable biosensors become smaller and more sophisticated, all our guests see them becoming a crucial part of healthcare. In addition to gathering data on all sorts of functions within the body, biosensors could provide therapies and treatments with minimal human intervention.

 

Tweetables:

  • So, we are measuring the absolute pressure inside the eye with this kind of technology. It originates from the automotive industry. Tire pressure sensors, where you also have to measure the pressure inside the tire. And so basically we took set technology and advanced it and made it so small that you can also implant this kind of sensor in an eye. — Max Ostermeier, co-founder and General Manager of Implandata Ophthalmic Products
  • So I had a physical a month ago, and along with the physical, they draw blood, and they send that blood off to a lab. I have a feeling in the next decade, that goes away. Why do you have to send a vial of blood to the lab? Because if I had a sensor, not even in an artery, but on top of an artery, I could do a complete analysis of everything in that blood that you’re doing from the lab. — Doug Adams, entrepreneur and founder of QURA
  • The important thing is that you are automatically getting data to the care group that is taking care of these patients, where they are able to see what’s happening. They’re able to see not just a snapshot once in a while, as you’d have from an external pressure cuff, but [get] continuous data longitudinally. — David Hendren, Chief Business Officer of QURA

 

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