A Doctor in your Pocket: Helmsley Charitable Trust Funds Diabetes Data Analysis Project

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If you are living with type 1 diabetes or caring for someone who is—you probably know all too well how much data this disease generates on a daily basis. From meters, pumps and CGMs, to other lifestyle devices like Fitbits and diet trackers, most of us have a ton of data at our fingertips. But how useful is this data if it’s overwhelming and difficult to share with your endocrinologist? Wouldn’t it be great if you could take all of that data and put it to use for your diabetes?

Here at Glu, we are excited to report some breaking news that might soon help you do just that.

The Leona B. and Harry M. Helmsley Charitable Trust announced today they have awarded $3.4 million to DreaMed Diabetes (DreaMed), a biomedical technology company developing an algorithm for analyzing medical device data to improve glucose control and patient care. The announcement was made today at the 9th International Conference on Advanced Technologies & Treatments for Diabetes (ATTD) in Milan, Italy, where DreaMed is demonstrating their product.

DreaMed’s MD-Logic Pump Advisor is an algorithm which analyzes type 1 diabetes (T1D) patient data to identify trends and make insulin dosing recommendations. Initially, this decision support tool will be provided to the clinician for review and approval before the patient makes any adjustments to their insulin plan. DreaMed has partnered with Glooko, a leader in mobile and web applications for diabetes management, and will make recommendations based on the aggregate data from Glooko’s FDA-cleared, HIPAA-compliant web platform. Insulin pumps, continuous glucose monitors (CGMs), blood glucose meters, fitness apps and devices, biometric devices and Glooko’s built-in food and medication database all work seamlessly within the Glooko system and feed into the DreaMed Advisor algorithm.

Eran Atlas, Co-founder and CEO of DreaMed Diabetes put it simply, “We are taking the way expert physicians are analyzing data, capturing how they do that, and turning it into software. It’s like having your doctor in your pocket.”

How will this Initiative Help?

The Helmsley Charitable Trust saw an opportunity to help patients and their doctors to not just simply access the data from various devices like insulin pumps and CGMs, but to analyze it more easily and frequently. The goal is to enable more informed decisions around type 1 management — and hopefully better outcomes.

Furthermore, by providing the analytics automatically, physicians could save valuable time during scheduled appointments. Without the need to download and analyze device data, there is more time to discuss treatment and other issues.

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The Diabetes Data Innovation Initiative

This funding was made possible by the Helmsley Charitable Trust’s Diabetes Data Innovation Initiative. Launched in June 2015, the initiative sought proposals from organizations developing innovative solutions that enable the use of diabetes device data to ease the burden of living with insulin-dependent diabetes. DreaMed was selected from a pool of over 70 applicants from 14 countries, all of whom were pioneering various digital health solutions for people with T1D.

David Panzirer, a Trustee of the Helmsley Charitable Trust, said the goal of the initiative was to fund a product that would ease the burden that data from various devices currently puts on both patients and clinics.

As the father of a 15-year-old daughter diagnosed with type 1 at age six, David knows a thing or two about this topic. An analytical person by nature, David has been personally frustrated that while his family has had access to helpful devices like CGMs and pumps, it has been difficult to transition this data created by minute-by-minute decisions into experiential learning that can be applied on a larger scale.

“With all the data from pumps, CGMs, etc., most people wish it were easier to deal with,” said Panzirer. “We wanted to fund something that could take all that data and turn it into something actionable.”

Over the past decade, advances in medical device technologies have made a significant impact on the monitoring, management and treatment of T1D. However, data from the T1D Exchange demonstrate that, due to the complexity of the disease, the majority of people living with T1D are not achieving optimal health outcomes and many report feeling overwhelmed by data on their insulin dosing, blood glucose values, exercise and meals. Currently, there is no system on the market that can combine and analyze data generated from different diabetes devices to identify trends and make insulin-dosing recommendations.

“DreaMed has the potential to play a profound role in improving therapies and the overall daily management of a relentless disease,” said Panzirer. “We are excited to support this innovative work which presents a tremendous opportunity to aggregate device data and transform it into actionable, easy-to-understand information for people managing type 1 diabetes every day.”

Next Steps for this Initiative

With this funding, DreaMed will carry out an international clinical study, conducted by the nextDREAM consortium and led by Professor Moshe Phillip of Schneider Children’s Medical Center of Israel, to generate preliminary data on the safety, reliability, and efficacy of the DreaMed Advisor algorithm for type 1 diabetes patients treated with insulin pumps.

The clinical study will be done in two phases. Phase 1 will require the physician to review and approve the Advisor’s insulin dosage recommendations, and will be conducted over the course of a three-month evaluation period. Phase 2 will be conducted on patients using the system on their own, adjusting their insulin without physician approval. Seven leading centers of excellence, including the Schneider Center, the Barbara Davis Center for Childhood Diabetes, Yale Children’s Diabetes Program, and Joslin Diabetes Center, have been identified as the sites for this trial.

Here at Glu, where many of our staff either have type 1 or parent a child with the disease, we look forward to following DreaMed’s progress and thank the Helmsley Charitable Trust for funding innovation in diabetes management.

Learn more about the Helmsley Charitable Trust’s Type 1 Program.

GluMom (Amy Bevan)

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