Government Technology

Developing an Implantable RFID Glucose-Sensing Microchip for Humans



November 15, 2007 By

VeriChip Corporation, a provider of RFID systems for healthcare and patient-related needs, and Digital Angel Corporation, owner of Patent No. 7,125,382, announced today that they will host events for the medical and investment communities on December 4-5th in New York surrounding the development of an implantable bio-sensing RFID microchip to measure glucose levels in the human body. Scott R. Silverman, VeriChip's chairman and chief executive officer, discussed plans for the company to have a functioning prototype of the device within six months in an online interview. In the interview, he was joined by Robert E. Carlson, Ph.D., president and principal investigator at Receptors LLC, which is an expert in the field of proteomics and the development of artificial receptors, and is partnering with VeriChip and Digital Angel. Receptors, which will participate in the New York events, will be responsible for demonstrating a self-contained glucose-sensing system in Phase I of the project.

Checking blood glucose levels regularly is critical to properly managing diabetes. The conventional method -- a finger prick -- is invasive, painful and often inaccurate. The implantable bio-sensor chip would have a passive transponder, a sensor and integrated circuitry that could allow anyone implanted with the microchip to painlessly scan it to determine their blood glucose concentration. The RFID microchip would then quickly and accurately transmit the glucose data back to a wireless scanner that displays the glucose level. The RFID microchip would be powered by the scanner signal, avoiding the need for a battery in the microchip.

In October 2006, Digital Angel announced the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office had granted Digital Angel patent No. 7,125,382, titled "Embedded Bio-Sensor System." Although it is unknown when commercialization of this glucose-sensing microchip may occur, VeriChip Corporation intends to market it as Digital Angel's exclusive licensee in the area of human implantable identification products. Digital Angel has also developed a temperature-sensing microchip, Bio-Thermo, which is already available for use in horses and companion pets.



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