Biological Sensors May Provide Physicians with Insights on Whether Treatments Are Effective

February 9, 2021 14:26:39

Patients suffering from potentially fatal diseases, such as cancer, may often undergo weeklong gaps that are discomforting when their courses of treatment begins. Doctors use this period to learn whether a patient’s treatment is working, and while it’s the standard way of doing things, the approach prevents health-care professionals from tracking the disease’s progression in real time.

Enter Glympse Bio, a start-up that originated from Sangeeta Bhatia’s laboratory. Sangeeta Bhatia is the Marble Center for Cancer Nanomedicine director as well as an MIT Professor of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science.

The start-up has developed small synthetic biosensors that can be used to examine disease activity in a patient’s body. To do this, the sensors are injected into an individual’s body, where they travel to the site of the disease and measure any changes in proteins linked to the disease in question. The biosensors are then excreted by the patient through urine and examined using lab techniques.

The firm believes that this technology has the potential to not only transform how diseases are detected in the human body but also how they are kept track of. This will provide physicians with better understanding of a disease that’s based on data from the individual’s body, which will assist them in prescribing the right courses of treatment for their patients.

Bhatia, who also happens to be a member of the Institute for Medical Engineering and Science and the Koch Institute for Integrative Cancer Research at MIT, explains that when a patient is put on medication, it becomes a waiting game. This is because there’s nothing else clinicians can do but wait to see whether the ailment is responding to the treatment. He hopes that this technology will give information to both patients and physicians earlier.

The company recently concluded the phase 1 trial of its sensors in patients suffering from NASH (non-alcoholic steatohepatitis). The ailment is a fatal liver disease that affects roughly 5% of the adult population in the United States. Currently, the process used to diagnose NASH involves a piece of the individual’s liver being biopsied, which means that the disease may often not be detected until it has progressed to the advanced stages.

In addition to this, the firm is tuning its biosensors to track the development of various inflammations, infections and cancers. Achieving success in this would provide patients, doctors and companies that develop drugs a powerful tool in the fight against various life-threatening diseases.

Company CEO Caroline Loew stated that the technology would help doctors in diagnosing ailments that were hard to diagnose while also enabling pharmaceutical companies to develop drugs more effectively.

Other biomedical companies are also deploying their resources in a quest to finding solutions to other health issues. For example, Predictive Oncology (NASDAQ: POAI) has an in-house bioinformatics AI platform and other resources it deploys to deliver precision treatments against cancer.

NOTE TO INVESTORS: The latest news and updates relating to Predictive Oncology (NASDAQ: POAI) are available in the company’s newsroom at

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