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Eli Lilly Looks to mHealth Data to Improve Medication Delivery

Eli Lilly is expanding its partnership with digital health company Evidation Health to gather data from mHealth wearables and smartphones for projects designed to create new digital therapeutic platforms.

Source: ThinkStock

By Eric Wicklund

- One of the bigger players in the pharma industry is upping its mHealth game with a partnership designed to draw data from wearables and smartphones to improve the design and delivery of digital therapeutic treatments.

Eli Lilly this week announced an expansion of its ongoing partnership with Evidation Health, a California-based digital analytics company launched out of the Stanford Health-GE Venture incubator.

Through the collaboration, Lilly researchers will have access to Evidation’s Andromeda platform, which gathers data from mHealth devices with patient consent and processes that information for use in clinical studies or to create predictive models.

“Digital health advancements, including mobile devices and wearables, have the potential to improve and personalize health outcomes,” Divakar Ramakrishnan, Lilly’s Chief Digital Officer, said in a press release announcing the collaboration. “By leveraging Evidation’s Andromeda platform, Lilly’s scientists are gaining a deeper understanding of the physiological, environmental, and contextual indicators that can help shape future advancements in medicine and medicine delivery.”

Lilly researchers are already using Evidation’s data platform is a wide-ranging study of connected health platforms for diabetes treatment. They’re gathering data from continuous glucose monitors and insulin pumps, as well as other “real-world information,” to design a platform that would support automated insulin delivery and a connected insulin pen.

“Our initial collaborations with Lilly demonstrated that digital biomarkers can play a significant role in understanding individuals and disease, and we are excited to expand our collaboration,” Christine Lemke, Evidation Health’s co-founder and president, added in the press release. “The data platform product embodies an industry-wide change to the way we measure health, which makes it more proactive, objective, and ultimately meaningful to individuals.”

Evidation Health is working with several healthcare providers on mHealth-flavored research projects.

Earlier this year, Boston’s Brigham and Women’s Hospital launched a program with Evidation to determine whether mHealth data collected on smartphones and wearables can be used to help treat people with chronic pain.

Called the Digital Signals in Chronic Pain (the DISCover Project), the study seeks to capture “digital signals” from sensors in mobile devices and fitness bands used by as many as 10,000 participants. Researchers will study whether that data, combined with other information such as weather, diet, genomic information and medical data, can be used to identify when someone is in pain and develop care management plans for treatment.

Evidation is contributing up to $1 million for the project, in which Lemke is also a participant.

“The widespread use of wearables, sensors and digital health tools gives us an opportunity to quantify the real lives of patients who suffer from chronic pain - now a critically important public health condition in the US,” Deborah Kilpatrick, PhD, Evidation Health’s CEO, said in a press release. “We are running this large-scale pain study to gain powerful insights on how behavioral factors are associated with health outcomes of chronic pain patients.”

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