Aldo Di Costanzo Mata is developing a new medical device, Gluckli, for the continuous monitoring of blood glucose in the preterm infant. With the new device, hypoglycemia, a phenomenon that occurs in almost 2/3 of all preterm babies, can be detected earlier. The new device measures the glucose level non-invasively over the skin and help practitioners to detect and reduce the negative effects of severe hypoglycemia.
Currently, at the neonatal intensive care units (NICUs), invasive blood samples are drawn from a heel-prick procedure to measure the blood glucose concentration of preterm babies. The procedure is suboptimal, causing pain and increases the risks of infections. A major drawback is that the frequency of such measurements is limited to every 3 hours. For this reason, 2/3 of all hypoglycemic cases are not detected in time, leading to impairments or even death.
Gluckli will consist of a bedside unit that will display the blood glucose levels and control a disposable biocompatible microfluidic glucose sensor. The device should be easy to apply, self-calibrating and with a user-friendly control unit.
The first Gluckli prototype has been successfully tested in the clinic. The results were very promising with down to 1% difference between Gluckli and the routinely used invasive glucose sensing procedure.
During his UZH Entrepreneur Fellowship, Aldo Di Costanzo Mata will finalize the next iteration of Gluckli, that contains a self-calibrating sensor. This work includes doing more measurements in the clinic and putting together a team to keep develop Gluckli also beyond the Fellowship.
Affiliation: Prof. Dr. sc. techn. Martin Wolf
Start date: 06/2021