IoT News Roundup

IBM, Pfizer to enlist IoT in the fight against Parkinson's; BKON offering Eddystone beacon platform; HID's new digital ID platform; GCell's indoor solar-powered beacon; global consumer survey gauges trust in IoT; ZigBee Alliance gains retail group's endorsement.
By Mary Catherine O'Connor
Apr 08, 2016

IBM, Pfizer Teaming Up to Test IoT for Treating Parkinson's Disease
In an effort to improve the treatment of Parkinson's disease, which requires doctors to continually evaluate the efficacy and dosage of the drugs they administer, IBM is teaming up with drug company Pfizer for an experiment leveraging Internet of Things technology. The two companies say they are starting to test wearable sensors and setting up scenarios in which the devices could be used to collect data regarding patients' day-to-day activities.

The goal is to design sensors and data-collection systems that could amass a baseline of data regarding patients' daily activity, and then to use machine learning to identify changes in behavior and health. In particular, the companies want to be able to passively measure factors such as motor function, dyskinesia (a type of movement disorder), cognition, sleep and daily grooming activities.

The effort is still at a very early stage. TechCrunch reports that if the companies are able to create "an ideal sensor pack that's cost-effective and easy to set up and maintain in a large number of houses," Pfizer may then launch a clinical trial to test the efficacy of this type of disease monitoring. According to the Parkinson's Disease Foundation, approximately 60,000 Americans are diagnosed with Parkinson's disease each year.

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