Last year, the OPEN Project applied for the bytes4diabetes-Award 2020 and out of many applicants was selected as one of the 11 finalists. OPEN took the fabulous opportunity to present its research project which not only investigates the outcomes of users of do-it-yourself artificial pancreas systems (DIYAPS), but also aims to find a solution for a wider use of any of the artificial pancreas systems at the award’s show. Many people from different backgrounds came to talk and ask questions about OPEN with our project manager Hanne who represented the team on this day.
The bytes4diabetes award, sponsored by BERLIN-CHEMIE AG, is intended to promote the digitization process in diabetology and to encourage a constructive exchange between the various players. In 2020 for the first time, creative minds from clinics or diabetes centers, universities, research institutions or industry, start-ups or talented lone wolves were invited to apply with a digital solution they have created for people with diabetes (PwD), their caregivers or for health care professionals (HCP). A few are then selected to present their ideas at the DiaTec in Berlin, the most important German advanced training event for health care professionals in diabetes technology and digitization.
This year´s winners are:
1. SNAQ – Take a photo of your plate and the smartphone app “SNAQ” coming from a Swiss start-up will recognize the food. If necessary, you can make manual corrections or additions. Then the app will calculate the amount of food and provide you with the nutritional values of your meal, e.g. carbs, proteins and fat. It is planned to turn this into a medical device which will propose the bolus for a meal to people with diabetes, but it can already help to better calculate the right amount of insulin needed.
2. Graphs to Fight Diabetes – At the “Deutsches Zentrum für Diabetesforschung” (DZD – German Center for Research on Diabetes) studies on different aspects of diabetes are made in various disciplines: basic research, epidemiology, health services research and clinical research. Thus, the research data sets are stored in separate databases and unstructured. The DZD project “Graphs to Fight Diabetes” aims to bring together this existing treasury of diabetes data, structure and analyze it, using innovative IT-technology – graph technology – and uncover and visualize previously hidden cross-connections in order to better understand the origin of the disease and develop new, precise methods of therapy (Precision Medicine).
3. Advice-Device – This project from the “Diabetes-Dorf Initiative Althausen GmbH” and SINOVO presents a therapy-supporting software especially developed for people with type 1 diabetes who are using an insulin pump. Many factors have an influence on the needed amount of insulin, such as meals, activities, menstruation, stress, certain medications or changes in insulin sensitivity, to name a few. The software analyzes data and offers specific recommendations for the insulin dose to deliver according to 135 diabetes guidelines approved in clinical studies and the 35 years of work experience and expertise of Dr. Bernhard Teupe. The Advice-Device (AD) Software is self-learning and therefore will improve the more it is used.
4. A special award for worldwide social responsibility: Smartphone-Based Tele-Ophthalmology – People in the slums and rural areas of India do not receive adequate medical care due to the lack of doctors. An incredibly high number of Indians are blind or visually impaired. The main reason for this is diabetic retinopathy as the eyes of people with diabetes are not been examined. Thus, a beginning retinopathy cannot be treated to prevent blindness. The “Universitäts-Augenklinik Bonn” (university eye hospital) has developed a new screening method, in which auxiliary staff – optometrists – in India can perform eye examinations in mobile screening-camps using an optical adapter for a smartphone. The adapters are substantially cheaper than conventional devices. The photos are sent online to the telemedical center of the Sankara Eye Hospital in Bangalore, where ophthalmologists can make the diagnosis within minutes. The Indian doctors are trained in Bonn and the optometrists are trained directly in South India. It is planned to further expand the screening to save thousands of Indian people with diabetes from blindness.
If you want to read more about bytes4diabetes and the winners, look here. You will also find the other nominees here.
(The bytes4diabetes website is in German only, but you will find further English explanations on most project-websites.)