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Samsung, UCSF to Partner on Mobile Health Care Technologies

Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 tablet

Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 tablet (Samsung Electronics Co.)

21 February 2014. University of California in San Francisco (UCSF) and Samsung Electronics Company are establishing a lab to develop and test new mobile technologies in health care. Financial and intellectual property arrangements for the new UCSF-Samsung Digital Health Innovation Lab were not disclosed.

UCSF says mobile health technologies have not yet reached their potential due, in part, to the lack of rigorous and systematic validation. The partnership is expected to fill this gap through the combination of Samsung’s experience in electronics and UCSF’s expertise in medicine and digital health.

The university and Samsung plan to use the joint lab, located at UCSF’s Mission Bay campus, to test and validate mobile technologies for preventive health solutions. The lab is expected to develop and test solutions using sensors for wearable computing devices and and algorithms for cloud-based analytics to make sense of the data collected through these devices.

Samsung develops medical imaging equipment, including digital X-ray and ultrasound machines. For mobile devices, however, the company’s strategy up to now is largely to adapt its standard off-the-shelf devices for specialized health care needs. One such application, for senior living facilities, is to pre-load medical records software on Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 tablets that Samsung says give clinicians instant wireless access to patient records, both for residents and out-patient clients.

UCSF’s industry partnerships include a collaboration with GE Healthcare that led to the establishment of an advanced imaging laboratory in 2005 at the Mission Bay campus. The lab, says the university, in 2010 developed an imaging technology that monitors changes in hyperpolarized pyruvate, a naturally occurring sugar produced by cells during metabolism. That particular sugar is also an indicator of tumor aggressiveness, which makes it possible to visually map the spread of cancer.

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