Diabetes focused mobile-health developer LabStyle Innovations said it raised $2.5 million in a new round of equity financing last week, with funds slated to support its Dario diabetes management solutions system.
The system is designed to operate around a smartphone and a small glucose meter that communicates with the phone through the audio jack, the company said. The smartphone as a central device is important to the systems functionality and ease of adopting, executive veep Todd Durniak told MassDevice.com.
“I think with the advent of smartphone penetration into the market place, where 74% of Americans with cell phones have a smart phone, it allows us to do things with self-monitoring of health that we were never able to do before,” Durniak said.
The small plug-in monitor contains everything necessary to take blood glucose readings, which the Dario platform uploads to cloud-based storage where they can be observed, recorded and shared by caretakers, physicians and others, Durniak said.
“It allows people to stay in touch with caregivers. Imagine a child in school with type 1 diabetes, and the child fails the test, their mother will get an immediate text on their smartphone saying their son or daughter has tested their blood and their results are there. So that really creates a different sort of linking in real time with patients and caregivers,” Durniak said.
There’s no limit to the number of users that can see the results and the data is secure, Durniak said, who stated that “security is the highest priority” for the system.
While there is no continuous glucose monitor or insulin pump support, something many other major players in diabetes are working towards, Durniak said the device shines because of what it does now, and for patients who don’t need that technology to handle their diabetes.
“Its right now. It’s here and now. And what this also does is it allows you to have the smartphone enabled cloud-based digital measurement at really no additional cost to the healthcare system over and above what they’re paying for their current devices,” Durniak said. “There’s a whole segment of pre-diabetics and type 2 diabetics where they can’t really justify going all the way to an artificial pancreas or CGM solution. For anyone who has to test 2 or 3 times a day, it works – they get reminders on their phone, saying ‘hey, you need to test in the morning, afternoon, evening’. The fact that you don’t have to have a lot of additional testing equipment other than the small meter, I think, makes it a little more accessible and easier to use.”
The round was joined by private investors, including current shareholders, and a new investment from Shmuel Farhi, the company said.
“Shmuel Farhi, a prominent Canadian investor, was a major contributor in this round of funding. LabStyle benefits from the support of investors like Mr. Farhi, as well as our other shareholders who have displayed their loyalty to the Company by making repeat investments in this and prior rounds of funding,” CEO Erez Raphael said in prepared remarks.
The device received CE Mark approval in the European Union in 2013 and is hopeful for FDA 510(k) clearance for the system this year.