According to an application published by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO), Google’s looking at a new way to draw blood. This will help diabetes patients measure glucose levels without ever using a single needle.
The so-called “Needle-Free Blood Draw” would send an “abrupt surge” of pressurized gas into a barrel connected to the skin. From there, a micro-particle travels at high speed and penetrates the skin. A small amount of blood resulting from that is then sucked up through the negative pressure barrel, allowing users to determine their blood sugar levels.
While patented technology does not always result in actual products, Google has been working on a new way to determine diabetes patients’ blood sugar levels with the help of smart contact lenses. Last year, Google licensed the technology to pharmaceutical giant Novartis, which plans to develop and commercialize special contact lenses to help improve eye care and manage diseases like diabetes.
Google is also working on a cloud-based platform that monitors glucose levels.
Indeed, the entire technology industry is taking greater interest in health. Apple, for instance, has partnered with major researchers for its own HealthKit platform aimed at creating new ways to monitor health-related information through its devices.
IBM is similarly bullish on health-related technology, using its Watson platform to help the medical field make more informed decisions, and maybe cure cancer.