Zapping diabetes

Before we get into our musings for today our prayers go out to everyone impacted by Hurricane Florence. To our many friends in the area be safe.

Now onto the show……

You just knew this coming per a story on the Medical Design and Outsourcing web site;

“GE and DARPA are collaborating on a $2.9 million study of neuromodulation as a treatment for Type 2 diabetes.

GE scientists have developed a novel, potentially breakthrough approach that could restore nerve signals to a healthy state using non-invasive devices that stimulate metabolic biosystems and produce drug-like effects, but with greater precision than traditional treatments, and with fewer side effects.”

That’s right GE and DARPA want to zap Type 2 using electricity. Now we don’t want to make light of this effort, but GE doesn’t exactly have a great track record in diabetes. Keep in mind this company invested $8 million into the now defunct C8 Medisensors the company which claimed they had developed a non-invasive CGM.

Now if that name sounds familiar it should as it is this technology that Apple based their CGM effort on. You know that super-secret effort which will be so damn cool it will revolutionize diabetes care forever, that effort which didn’t work the first time around and won’t work the second time around either no matter how much money Apple throws at it.

We hate to break the news to all the Apple pickers but when it comes to CGM Apple will get closer and closer to Dexcom. THEY WILL NOT SUCCESFULLY DEVELOP A NON-INVASIVE CGM.

From the Keystone Cop department our good friend Olivier Brandicourt the CEO of that rudderless ship known as Sanofi noted that company’s restructuring effort is ahead of schedule. Per a story posted by Reuters Olivier states “It’s only the beginning, and we will continue to be very efficient”.

Far be it from us to tell Olivier what to say but using the word efficient to describe anything done by our wine drinking friends is like saying the folks in the Carolina have a rain issue this weekend. Sooner or later it will dawn on everyone when it comes to diabetes Sanofi was a one hit wonder. Granted Lantus was a huge hit but since Lantus the company has been anything but efficient.

As we noted earlier this week the diabetes franchise has yet another new leader who has worked with Olivier before. However, as we also noted it will take more than a new leader to turn this struggling unit around. Just all the other leaders who came and went.

We seriously think Sanofi should get out of diabetes and stick with what they are good at. Only problem is we have no idea what if anything they are good at. So, I guess we’re stuck watching the company fumble about in diabetes.

From the let’s throw good money into a bad idea news comes that DarioHealth has raised another $10 million. Yes, the makers of the MyDario way cool whiz-bang conventional glucose meter has found suckers, excuse us investors, too lazy to do their due diligence. Yet what we found so funny was how the press release was written get a load of this;

“DarioHealth Corp. (DRIO), a leading global digital health company with mobile health and big data solutions, announced today that it has closed on a private placement offering with institutional and private investors for the sale of shares of the Company’s common stock and shares of the Company’s newly designated Series D convertible preferred stock.”

First you will notice there is no mention of the MyDario. But what’s really impressive here are all the current buzzwords – digital health – mobile health and of course big data. Damn that is very impressive. Never mind the MyDario doesn’t have an ice-cubes chance in hell of being commercially successful, these people can write one hell of a press release.

Yet DarioHealth isn’t the only company who makes a conventional way cool whiz bang glucose meter that sends readings to the cloud then coaches the patient, so they achieve better outcomes (or so they all claim). Far from it but one thing all of these companies have in common is Chutzpah and the use of hyperbole. Listening to these companies or reading their press releases one would get the impression they are the best thing since the invention of the iPhone.

What none of these companies have is hard clinical data that proves their systems improve patient outcomes. Oh, sure there is “empirical” evidence and tons of fuzzy math but actual clinical data, please. This is like enshrining Sam Darnold the rookie quarterback for the New York Jets into the Hall of Fame because he had one good game. Call us crazy but we think maybe it takes more than one good game to anoint someone as a superstar.

The fact is all these way cool whiz-bang conventional meter companies have a huge problem and none of them want to admit it. Yet just as DarioHealth duped more suckers into throwing money away they continue to raise even more money. To us this says two things; diabetes tech continues to be hotter than Hallie Barry in a bikini (anyone who has seen Die Another Day cannot argue with that statement) and there is no cure for stupid.

And since we don’t want to be accused of being sexiest how about hotter than George Clooney, Brad Pitt or George Strait. No matter what your preference is there still is no cure for stupid.

Have a great weekend.