Published on 22 January 2021

World’s first non-invasive, real-time continuous glucose monitor could make huge impact on global diabetes community.

The “feeling of freedom” for people with diabetes could soon be just a wrist length away as an innovative device is one step closer to being commercially available.

With more than 463 million people worldwide believed to have diabetes, the Afon Technology device, a portable, non-invasive, real-time continuous glucose monitor, could be a real breakthrough.

The device, which closely resembles a wrist-watch, is tipped by developers as having the potential to completely radicalise the lives of people living with diabetes who need to monitor blood glucose levels as part of their management of the condition.

The device manufactured by Afon in Wales will measure blood glucose levels without the need to penetrate the skin at all, making it easier to manage the condition and therefore reducing the risk of diabetes-related complications such as heart attack, stroke, blindness, kidney failure and limb amputations.

This is a feature unavailable on currently available CGM devices.

Early clinical research has given developers hope that such a device could become a reality in the near future.

The CGM device which closely resembles a wristwatch

The CGM device closely resembles a wristwatch

Professor de Vries, Medical Director at Profil, the diabetes research organisation in Germany specialising in internal medicine and endocrinology, and principal investigator at the University of Amsterdam's Faculty of Medicine, said: “We evaluated the Afon device under both hyper-and hypoglycaemic (high and low blood glucose levels) conditions during the clinical trials and we were surprised and excited by the possibilities of this technology.”

The product will be designed to alert the user when they have high and low glucose levels and will also help to monitor personalised health trends.

Not only that, but the smart technology has been neatly designed to fit inside a wristwatch strap to communicate with the user’s choice of smartwatch or smart device. With no replaceable parts it will be cheaper than other current diabetes technologies available on the market which rely on replacement patches and needles.

Companies like Apple, Samsung and Google are rumoured to have been trying to develop non-invasive blood glucose monitoring, but so far none have been successful. Afon Technology hopes to win the race to this important milestone.

Afon Technology’s CEO Sabih Chaudhry said: “Our taskforce of experts are world-class and together we’re proud to be developing a global first. Our recent clinical trials have gone really well and we’re excited to be bringing this device, which is the next big thing in diabetes technology, to people very soon.

“Diabetes can be incredibly limiting to someone’s life, but we believe we’ve created a device which will provide the wonderful feeling of freedom all wrapped up in a watch on the wrist.”

It is hoped the device, which is set to undergo another round of clinical trials, will be available to purchase from mid-2022.

According to research £5.5 billion of the NHS hospitals budget is spent on diabetes, and poor diabetes control was responsible for £3 billion in potentially avoidable hospital treatment in England in the year 2017-2018.

The company, founded in 2015 and based in Wales, has already scooped a major industry prize, picking up a Healthcare and Pharmaceutical Award.

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