As someone who has had the terrifying experience of fighting for breath in the middle of an asthma attack, I’m always looking for new medicines and technologies to prevent the next one.
Asthmapolis, a Wisconsin-based company dedicated to advancements in asthma treatment, announced that it has partnered with Synapse to develop technologies for asthma treatment, including a sensor that attaches to existing rescue inhalers to collect data, such as when and where patients experience asthma conditions, according to a company press release.
The Asthmapolis sensor combines medication sensors, mobile applications, and analytics. It received U.S. Food and Drug Administration clearance.
Asthmapolis will soon begin marketing the technology to healthcare providers for their patients with asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease.
"Asthmapolis was a unique and challenging product for Synapse," said Dylan Garrett, director of business development at Synapse's San Francisco office. "For people with asthma, an inhaler is a device they rely on regularly and, in many ways, have a personal relationship with.”
According to the press release, the Asthmapolis sensor is being used by 500 residents of Louisville, KY to determine trends at the public health level and allows physicians to remotely monitor their patients' level of asthma control.
The really innovative part of the sensor is that, by attaching to existing inhalers, it communicates with the patient's mobile phone or base station to transmit usage data, including time and location, “providing valuable information on possible environmental asthma triggers, such as air quality and pollen outbreaks,” according to the press release.
Asthmapolis tapped Synapse for its strengths in multi-disciplinary engineering. "Our mission is to make it easier for patients and physicians to do a better job managing their asthma every day," said David Van Sickle, co-founder and CEO of Asthmapolis. "In order to do that, the sensor had to be reliable and it had to meet the needs of people with chronic respiratory disease. The team at Synapse recommended several design changes that have improved the performance of the sensor and helped ensure it can keep up with the day-to-day life of an inhaler. So far, the response from the participants in Louisville has been positive."
By Deborah Hirsch