Passive behavior monitoring and analytics company Ginger.io is now soliciting participants for a diabetes pilot study, building on the work that won them the Sanofi Data Design Diabetes Innovation Challenge in 2011.
Ginger.io, which recently raised $6.5 million in a round led by Khosla Ventures, makes passive monitoring software for smartphones, with the goal of creating profiles for how different diseases and conditions affect behavior. Ginger.io's software monitors how often users make calls, how long they talk for, how often they text, and similar metrics, as well as location data. Eventually, the company will be able to compare their behavior to a baseline and send out alerts when it's out of the ordinary. To make the system work for particular chronic diseases, like diabetes, the company needs to collect a lot of data to form what it calls a "Behavior Genome" for a given condition.
"The infrastructure for collecting data, the infrastructure for processing it, ... all of that is similar [between conditions]," CEO Anmol Madan told MobiHealthNews late last year. "There's one platform we use for all these conditions, but the specific models for how patients behave would depend on the specific conditions."
The company is looking for participants with Type II diabetes between the ages of 18-65 who own an Android or Apple smartphone and speak fluent English. Pilot study participants will install the Ginger.io software on their phones, and, additionally, take occasional three- to five-question surveys about their health and mood. In exchange, users of the app will get feedback from the program -- alerts, insights, and observations about their health. Down the road, the company will also let them set up the software to alert family members of behavioral red flags.
Ginger.io won the first-ever Sanofi Data Design Diabetes Innovation Challenge in November 2011 with a version of the app the company is now testing. According to the Ginger.io blog, the company has spent the intervening year on improving the interface and the user experience of the app. In May, the company launched a similar pilot in partnership with the Collaborative Chronic Care Network (C3N) for patients with Crohn's disease or ulcerative colitis. The company appears to be launching the diabetes pilot alone, though they are turning to clinical trial-patient matching website Corengi.com to help solicit participants.