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By Jonah Comstock January 18, 2016
A piece of long-awaited good news for fitness wearable maker Jawbone -- $165 million in new equity funding -- came with two more pieces of bad news: a subsequent drop in valuation and the departure of its recently hired president Sameer Samat, who returned to Google. Re/Code broke the news. The new funding is from the Kuwait Investment Authority (KIA), which means the funding comes directly from...
By Jonah Comstock January 11, 2016
Google has filed another interesting healthcare-related patent, a mechanism that could detect when a patient is eating and issue a contextual reminder to take a medication.  Israel-based patent authors Asaf Zomet and Michael Shynar describe the patented invention as one that uses some mechanism to detect when the user is eating, confirms that this is the case, and then delivers “a reminder to...
By Jonah Comstock December 22, 2015
There was a lot of provider news in 2015, with hospitals across the country deploying digital health tools not only in pilots but sometimes in full-scale deployments. The list of notable example below, while long, is by no means comprehensive.  Trend: New joint ventures Some hospital systems launched new business ventures focused specifically on digital health. In February, telecom giant Cox...
By Jonah Comstock December 7, 2015
Google Life Sciences has finally gotten its new name as an independent company under the aegis of Alphabet: Verily. With the launch of a new website, the company has also clarified and cemented its mission: to bring different healthcare and technology stakeholders together to reinvent areas of healthcare. "Imagine a chemist and an engineer and a doctor and a behavioral scientist, all working...
By Brian Dolan November 11, 2015
San Francisco-based AliveCor, which offers smartphone-enabled ECG devices, has announced former Google SVP Vic Gundotra as its new CEO. Gundotra, who left Google in 2014 after eight years -- including a few heading up Google+, replaces Euan Thomson, an AliveCor board member and Khosla Ventures investor, who assumed the role of interim CEO in 2013. Gundotra becomes AliveCor's fourth CEO in almost...
By Brian Dolan October 27, 2015
Fitbit Surge The Consumer Electronics Association (CEA), which puts on the massive CES event in Las Vegas every January, just published a set of voluntary guidelines for how technology companies should approach privacy and security for personal wellness data collected by wearable devices and other connected wellness devices. The CEA said the guidelines represent a consensus among its member...
By Aditi Pai September 17, 2015
Google subsidiary Alphabet, has hired Dr. Tom Insel, former director of the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH), to spearhead the company's mental health efforts in its life sciences division. Insel has worked as director of NIMH for 13 years before he moved to Google. In a statement about his transition, Insel said, "The GLS mission is about creating technology that can help with earlier...
By Jonah Comstock September 16, 2015
An Oscar-branded Misfit Flash device. Oscar, a small New York City-based health insurer noted for its individual focus and digital health savvy, has secured a $32.5 million investment from Google Capital, one of the search giant's two investment arms. The investment may well be strategic, according to the Wall Street Journal, which broke the story. Last April, Oscar raised $145 million in a...
By Jonah Comstock September 8, 2015
Google and Novartis are working on two smart contact lenses, and news broke this week about both of them: A new patent application sheds light on how Google might power its glucose-sensing contact lens, just a week after partner Novartis told a Swiss newspaper it was on track for human trials in 2016 of an autofocus lens for presbyopia patients. Patent applications don't always presage exactly...
By Jonah Comstock August 31, 2015
Sanofi's IBG Star connected glucometer. Google Life Science's recently-announced partnership with Dexcom (not to mention its contact lens project with Novartis) have already made it clear that diabetes is a focus for the company. Now the company is making that focus official in a new partnership with Sanofi and the Joslin Diabetes Center. "Today, we’re announcing a new partnership with Sanofi...

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