Pfizer and IBM to develop remote monitoring solutions for Parkinson’s disease

7 April 2016 (Last Updated April 7th, 2016 18:30)

Pfizer has collaborated with IBM to develop remote monitoring solutions to enhance the care offered by clinicians to patients afflicted with Parkinson's disease.

Pfizer has collaborated with IBM to develop remote monitoring solutions to enhance the care offered by clinicians to patients afflicted with Parkinson's disease.

The experiment is said to involve a system of sensors, mobile devices, and machine learning to provide real-time, around-the-clock disease symptom information to clinicians and researchers.

It is aimed at promoting a better understanding of the course of the disease, it will also help to shape the course of treatment in accordance to the information gathered, subsequently accelerating the development of new therapeutic options.

"The key to our success will be to deliver a reliable, scalable system of measurement and analysis that would help inform our clinical programmes across important areas of unmet medical need."

According to the World Health Organization (WHO), almost one billion families around the world are afflicted by Parkinson's disease which is a neurological disorder and accounts for 12% of deaths globally.

Around 60,000 Americans are diagnosed with Parkinson's disease each year according to the Parkinson's disease Foundation.

The collaboration seeks to create a comprehensive overview of the patient's condition by assessing a variety of health indicators including motor function, dyskinesia, cognition, sleep and daily activities such as grooming, dressing and eating.

It allows the clinicians to determine the effect of the medicines administered to the patients and shape the course of the treatment in accordance to the progress.

Information generated through the system also enables the researchers with the insights and real-world evidence needed to help develop potential new and better therapies.

Pfizer Worldwide Research and Development president Mikael Dolsten said: "The key to our success will be to deliver a reliable, scalable system of measurement and analysis that would help inform our clinical programmes across important areas of unmet medical need, potentially accelerating the drug development and regulatory approval processes and helping us to get better therapies to patients, faster."

The deal will also see the companies appoint an external advisory board comprising of patient groups, advocacy organisations, clinicians, and neuroscientists for guidance on the use of technology, medical devices, data management, and research protocols and to ascertain the needs of the patients to drive the programme.

The companies stated that the system is due to undergo its clinical trials.