A Medical Device Daily

ADA Technologies (ADA; Laramie Wyoming) received a $189,886 grant from the National Institute of Mental Health to develop a home lithiummonitor for use by patients with bipolar disorder. The testing tool would allow reliable, routine at-home monitoring of blood lithium concentrations, enabling individuals with bipolar disorder to conveniently and effectively manage their care.

Effective treatment of bipolar disorder, an inherited disease that affects 5.7 million adult Americans, is dependent on maintaining a lithium blood concentration that falls within a narrow range. Current monitoring methods are not amenable to home use by a patient, making it difficult for patients to know when their levels fall outside of this narrow range.

Testing lithium concentration in blood is extremely challenging due to the interference of sodium. ADA's research program will overcome this problem and produce a prototypical device for testing lithium blood concentrations.

In other grants news, BloodCenter of Wisconsin (BCW; Brookfield, Wisconsin) reported that the National Institutes of Health (NIH) has awarded a $1.4 million Small Business Technology Transfer grant to fund continued research into the deployment of Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) technology to enhance safety and reduce hospital costs related to the collection, manufacture and transfusion of blood products. The NIH grant allows the first-ever research into the potential clinical and financial benefits of RFID technology for automatic identification, tracking, and status monitoring of blood and blood products across the entire transfusion medicine supply chain.

Data from the Phase I research project, published this month in the peer-reviewed Journal of Healthcare Information Management, demonstrated that RFID-enabled processes offer the potential for tangible improvements to productivity and safety, including reductions in morbidity and mortality among hospital-based patients receiving blood transfusions.

The NIH grant will fund the development and testing of a prototype which will demonstrate the functionality and test the limits of the RFID solution in a realistic, yet safe and secure environment.