Prototype development at Spirocco Ltd.
Name of applicants: Spirocco Ltd.
Project title: Prototype development at Spirocco Ltd
Project code: VEKOP - 2.1.7. - 15 - 00433
Amount of aid contracted: 47 290 000 Ft
Project completion date: 30.06.2019
Content of the project
The two most common respiratory diseases are asthma and COPD. According to the WHO, there are about 300 million asthma (40 million EU, 23 million US) and 210 million COPD (40 million EU, 25 million US) patients worldwide. In Hungary, 160,000 people are affected by asthma and 200,000 by COPD, with the number increasing year by year according to the registry data of the Hungarian Respiratory Medicine System (Korányi yearbook). Patients most often use some form of inhaled medication as part of their drug therapy, given that it can be used to target the appropriate areas of the lungs.
Despite the fact that inhaled therapies are now widely available, about half of all asthma patients are not well controlled. Patients with COPD have a very high mortality rate, poor quality of life and a very high burden on patients and healthcare systems due to periodic exacerbations. The increase in exacerbations, which may be caused by inappropriate or non-use of medication, is closely associated with mortality. The survival time (on a probabilistic basis) of patients who exacerbate frequently does not exceed that of cancer patients! With the expansion of newer and newer drug therapies, the above outcomes are barely improving, mostly due to the poor patient cooperation and correct use of medication.
According to the GINA (Global Asthma Protocol), more than half of patients do not use their prescribed medication as directed by their doctor. If we improve patient attitude and make medication use transparent, patient adherence will improve, which will significantly improve the condition of these patients without the need to give them additional drug therapy.
As technology can now offer the possibility of correctly tracking use, we consider it a realistic and important goal to develop a tool to track the use of inhalation devices. In this way, the patient's condition can be assessed by both the patient and the doctor on the basis of an accurate knowledge of the level of drug use.
If the patient's level of use can be tracked, the next important objective is that the device should train timely correct use and help and continuously improve correct execution, whereby the therapeutic effect can be further improved.
If the above objectives are achieved, the patient will use his/her device in a better quality and increasingly at the expected time, which can be continuously monitored by the patient's doctor through remote access.
Another important point is the correct use of the devices, which our devices would also improve. This would help family doctors, specialists and nurses who are already significantly overburdened in the care of patients with asthma and COPD. All this in standardised controlled conditions tailored to the patient. We have also conducted a survey on overload in the care system in the past year, which shows shockingly how little time is devoted to patients and thus to teaching them how to use the right tools (published in an international journal).
The aim of the project is to develop an inhaler delivery device and associated mobile app that logs in real time the times of use of the inhaler preparation, uses a special microphone to measure the patient's suction and respiratory effort at the moment of drug activation and automatically delivers the medication. The device transmits the data to the assigned mobile device (phone, tablet), where it can be displayed in the form of time series and graphs.
The data is also stored on a server from the mobile communication device. The data stored on the server and the reports generated from it are accessible via a web interface to the doctor, the patient and other interested parties (with appropriate data protection safeguards).