Edible Sensor Monitors HIV Patients Antiretroviral Doses

A new ingestible sensor system that was put to the test in an interventional clinical trial gave HIV patients real-time antiretroviral dosage information, helping them to better manage their infection.

The Proteus Digital Health Feedback (PDHF) information technology system kept track of 130 HIV patients’ medication regimens and informed them in real-time when a dose had been taken. The participants had lower viral loads because they were more compliant with taking antiretrovirals (ARVs), according to the data.

This research uses an ingestible sensor device for ARV therapy in HIV-infected adults for the first time. The results are a key step in measuring and tracking HIV patients’ adherence to their treatment regimens and creating in-the-moment interventions to increase patient adherence.

A tiny edible sensor used by PDHF is over-encapsulated with medicine. A patient-worn patch with an inbuilt monitor and sensor detects when anything has been consumed. A mobile device receives a Bluetooth signal from the monitor and delivers an encrypted message to a central database.

Data from the ingestible sensor’s clinical trials

Participants were chosen from HIV clinics in the US and randomly assigned to either the conventional care (UC) or information system (IS) groups.

Compliance with antiretroviral therapy was the intervention program’s main result. Plasma HIV RNA and participant satisfaction with and acceptance of the system were the secondary outcomes. The researchers found that greater plasma HIV RNA management is associated with higher levels of ARV adherence. More than 90% of people were satisfied with the system overall. The analyses comprised all 112 (IS = 54, UC = 58) participants who had finished baseline with at least one follow-up data collection.

According to Dr. Eric Daar, co-principal investigator for the study, Chief, Division of HIV Medicine at Harbor-UCLA Medical Center, and Professor of Medicine at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA, when patients first registered in the study, they were having difficulty with consistent adherence to their medications.

Participants frequently stated, according to Daar’s addition, that the system gave them the extra encouragement and feedback they needed to properly manage their HIV infection.

co-principal investigator for the study and chair of the Section of Public and Population Health in the UCLA School of Dentistry, Dr. Honghu Liu, said that edible sensor technology is currently the most cutting-edge and accurate IT-based tool for measuring and tracking adherence behaviour with remote and real-time processes through a mobile device.

The research group included scientists from UCLA, Nebraska Medical Center, Yale University, and Harvard University who analysed the systems’ accuracy and evaluated their effectiveness for tracking and leveraging drug adherence. The study was funded by a $4 million grant from the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH).