French pharmaceutical company Sanofi and Verily Life Sciences, a unit of Google parent Alphabet, have launched a joint venture aimed at creating simple and intelligent diabetes management systems.
The joint venture, named Onduo, is based at Kendall Square in Cambridge, Massachusetts, Sanofi said in a statement on Monday.
"Onduo’s mission is to help people with diabetes live full, healthy lives by developing comprehensive solutions that combine devices, software, medicine and professional care to enable simple and intelligent disease management," the statement added.
Initially, Onduo will focus on the Type-2 diabetes community, specifically on developing solutions that could help people make better decisions about their day-to-day health, ranging from improved medication management to improved habits and goals.
Over time, the company plans to expand its focus to include the Type-1 diabetes community, and eventually to people at risk of developing diabetes with the goal of helping them better prevent the onset of the disease.
"The integration of multiple interventions, such as data-driven patient support and devices in addition to treatment, can help improve outcomes, which is important from the perspective of patients, healthcare professionals and the overall healthcare system," said Peter Guenter, Executive Vice President, Head, Global Diabetes & Cardiovascular Business Unit, Sanofi.
The company will leverage Verily’s experience in miniaturised electronics, analytics, and consumer software development, and Sanofi’s clinical expertise and experience in bringing innovative treatments to people living with diabetes.
Joshua Riff, who was a senior executive at UnitedHealth Group’s health services company Optum, has been appointed as the Chief Executive Officer of Onduo.
"My experience as a physician and in leading consumer health initiatives has shown me the daily burden of living with diabetes," Riff said.
"From monitoring food intake to testing glucose levels to actively seeking medical care, the challenges both on the physical and mental well-being of a person living with diabetes are incredibly difficult. We want to develop solutions that allow people living with diabetes to focus on the things they love and enjoy in life by providing tools to make dealing with their diabetes less burdensome," Riff noted.
Alphabet and Sanofi plan to invest about $500 million in the joint venture, according to reports.